Geothermal Energy to Power Eden Project

Scientists searching for 'Holy Grail' of energy begin drilling into Earth's crust.

Engineers have begun drilling three miles into the Earth's crust in search of sustainable round-the-clock energy for the world-famous Eden Project. A 450-tonne rig is hammering through the Cornish granite to reach hot rocks that form a spine along England's South West Peninsula.

Surveys suggest that water pumped down the borehole and back to the surface could reach 180C, enough to heat the domed glass biomes of exotic plants - and drive a 4-megawatt steam turbine to produce all the electricity the site needs. The surplus could also heat 4,000 local houses.

Sir Tim Smit, the co-founder of the Eden Project, told Sky News: "It's going to provide baseload, which is the holy grail of energy. "The argument from those who were anti-renewables was 'when the wind don't blow, and when the sun don't shine, you have a problem'. Now you haven't - this will provide you energy 24/7 when you want it, to fill in for all the other energy sources, so it's a wonderful triumvirate of power sources."

Geothermal energy could be tapped across large areas of the UK, north and south. Some parts of the country of hotter rocks than others but, all combined, geothermal energy could theoretically provide enough power to heat every home and business in the country.

Geothermal energy has already taken off in Germany, where 22,000 people are employed in an industry that saved 1.7 million tonnes of carbon in 2017.