Growers lured with promise of cheap heating

A glasshouse development area in south-east Netherlands is seeking to lure growers with the promise of cheap geothermal heating.

Californie, a private-sector development within the Greenport Venlo industrial area, consists of 150ha divided into individual plots covering 10-40ha.

"Each grower can make use of geothermal heat, so saving over the long term on one of the biggest costs in horticulture - energy," the development's website states. It claims that the site offers glasshouse growers savings of up to EUR4 per square metre each year.

An initial boring was conducted at the site in May last year, when "expectations of thermal potential were far exceeded", the developers added. A second well has recently been completed, with a further four proposed.

When complete, this will offer potential savings in natural gas of up to 10 million cu m per year, with the further possibility of returning electricity to the grid. Developers have begun offering tours of the site to potential tenants.

The Dutch glasshouse sector, traditionally concentrated in the Westland region, is increasingly relocating to other less crowded areas of the country that offer more room to expand.


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