Geothermal Water Getting Us Through The Cold - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Geothermal Water Getting Us Through The Cold

Published December 6, 2013

Iceland is living up to its expectations with temperatures dropping significantly in the past few days, reaching -20°C in some places. This is when Icelanders rely on geothermal water to get by.

90% of the geothermal water utilised in Iceland is used for central heating and according to Reykjavík Energy, usage of hot water in the capital area alone went up to 15,800 tons per hour on Thursday afternoon.

That’s equivalent of the hourly water volume needed for power plants Kárahnjúkavirkjun and Búrfellsvirkjun combined, producing all in all 930 megawatts, RÚV reports.

Last week, the hot water usage was around 10,000 tons per hour so the increase is 60% over a few days, due to the cold weather.

And the cold water is here to stay over the weekend at least although temperatures will start to rise a little in South Iceland on Saturday evening, Mbl reports.

However, on Friday morning, the frost went as high as -24°C at Gauksmýri weather station in North Iceland; it was -15°in Akureyri and -10 in Reykjavík.

The Fire Department urges people to check the pipes in their houses, especially in summer houses or buildings that stand empty at the moment, and to make sure the central heating is on, as water pipes might burst in frosty weather such as this.


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