H2020 Project GECO (Geothermal Emission Gas Control)

GECO (Geothermal Emission Gas Control) is a European project co-funded for four years (01/10/2018 - 30/09/2022) by the European Commission under Horizon 2020, the Framework Program for Research and Technological Development 2014 - 2020. The Project involves 18 Partners from 9 different countries, including Research Institutions, Universities and Companies active in the geothermal sector in Europe.

The project aims to study and develop, at industrial level, the production of geothermal energy with zero emissions. Geothermal fluids can naturally contain small variable amounts of CO2 and H2S that, if released into the atmosphere, can contribute negatively to the climate change.

For this reason, the project involves the development and implementation of innovative technologies for the purification and utilization of geothermal fluids and re-injection at the extraction sites, in four distinct European geothermal areas. IGG-CNR is in charge of studying through an accurate geological, geophysical, hydrological and geochemical monitoring program, at experimental level and through geochemical modelling, scenarios for the safe confinement of re-injected fluids rich in CO2, including their possible interaction with the surrounding rocks. These pre-feasibility studies are fundamental for the identification of territorial and geological criticalities in order to ensure maximum safety in the implementation of geothermal plants and beyond.

A second part of the project, in which IGG-CNR is actively involved, is dedicated to research on the mineralogical storage of CO2, through which the CO2-rich fluids reacts with minerals such as olivine, serpentine and brucite, contained in mafic and ultramafic rocks, and is trapped in the form of newly formed carbonates (i.e., mineral CCS, CO2 capture and storage). Southern Tuscany is an ideal place to study this process because it is rich in mafic and ultramafic rocks (basalt, gabbro, serpentinized peridotite) that react naturally with CO2-rich fluids resulting in the formation of magnesite deposits. The aim of GECO project is to identify through geological, geochemical, isotopic, experimental studies and through geochemical models, the optimal P-T-X conditions for mineral CCS for its future application at industrial scale.

The GECO project, in addition to promoting sustainable zero emission energy technologies in Europe, through the re-injection of non-condensable gases or their conversion into carbonates through the process of mineralogical sequestration of CO2, works to contribute to the increase of social acceptability of geothermal energy in our society, through actions of dissemination among the population and environmental education at different school levels.

The Institute of Geosciences and Earth Resources actively participates in the project with 20 units of staff including researchers and technicians, a post-doc and two IGG associates of the University of Bari. 

Scientific coordinator IGG-CNR: Chiara Boschi (chiara.boschi@igg.cnr.it)

GECO-team: Ilaria Baneschi, Marco Bonini, Chiara Boschi, Serena Botteghi, Andrea Dini, Gianluca Gola, Matteo Lelli, Adele Manzella, Domenico Montanari, Giordano Montegrossi, Francesco Norelli, Andrea Orlando, Brunella Raco, Andrea Rielli, Giovanni Ruggieri, Alessandro Santilano, Eugenio Trumpy, Gabriele Bicocchi, Andrea Brogi (associato IGG-CNR); Domenico Liotta (associato IGG-CNR). 

Web-site: https://geco-h2020.eu

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/geothermal-emission-control-geco-project/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/GecoProject


GECO Contact:

Chiara Boschi chiara.boschi@igg.cnr.it

Eugenio Trumpy eugenio.trumpy@igg.cnr.it

Serana Botteghi serena.botteghi@igg.cnr.it