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Dutch-German cooperation agreement on geothermal research signed

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima of the Netherlands visited the Albert Einstein Science Park on Potsdam's Telegrafenberg during their stay in the State of Brandenburg on Wednesday, 22 May. 

The highlight of the one-hour visit was the ceremonial signing of two cooperation agreements between the GFZ and the Technische Universiteit Delf (TU Delft) as well as the PIK and the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The GFZ and the TU Delft are planning a long-term strategic cooperation, among other things in the fields of geothermal energy, heat storage and further underground storage possibilities. This also includes access to the GFZ's Groß Schönebeck geothermal research platform and to a research facility on the TU Delft campus.

GFZ Chairman Reinhard Hüttl: "The GFZ and TU Delft have been working together in a focused and extremely fruitful manner for more than six years. We now want to consolidate this. It is particularly significant for us to start this new phase of our cooperation that will further integrate and strengthen European research on the energy transition in the presence of the King and Queen of the Netherlands".

The PIK and the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam will intensify their research cooperation in the field of extreme events with the cooperation agreement. In particular, it is planned to use methods of machine learning to better predict extremes. This will be achieved by combining data-driven approaches with current climate computer simulations.

PIK Director Ottmar Edenhofer: “Climate change does not stop at national borders. That's why climate research must be carried out across borders – as must climate policy. If the sea level rises with climate change, this means special risks for the Netherlands. In stabilising our climate, the Netherlands can be an important partner in a pioneer coalition for an effective pricing of the greenhouse gas CO2”.

As part of the royal visit, a full-day meeting took place between a delegation of scientists and entrepreneurs from the Netherlands and representatives of GFZ and PIK on the energy supply of the future.

At six thematic tables in the Great Refractor, the royal couple could inquire about research in the fields of geothermal energy and underground storage of cold and heat in urban areas, Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage (CCUS) (all three with GFZ participation) as well as effects of climate change/extreme events, advantages and challenges of decarbonisation outside the energy sector, and transformation pathways and policies for the decarbonisation of the energy system (all three with PIK participation).

Joint press release of GFZ, PIL, and AIP

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