Growers in the Dutch town of Vierpolders have been using geothermal heat for a few years already and are now able to keep on using it. Critical residents of the surrounding area opened a legal case against the granted permit, but recently they received disappointing results from the Council of State.
The permit, which had a court hearing on the 24th of July, was granted back in 2013. The plans were changed and limited in size in 2016 in order to meet environmental requirements. According to the residents, this meant that the permit no longer met the conditions on which the permit was granted back in 2013.
Safety risks were noted, among which the presence of an oil tank and a flare with the possible risk of a gas explosion. However, since the adjustments to the installation that were made in 2016, the risk of oil being brought up while drilling is non-existing. In addition, research from 2016 showed that the risk of a gas explosion was minimized as well. There are no areas marked as ‘dangerous area’ surrounding the torch installation.