Belgium - Direct Uses




district heating



Water waste treatment



Ground source heat pumps





Total thermal installed capacity in MWt


Direct use in TJ/year


Direct use in GWh/year


Capacity factor



Country Update: In general, geothermal energy has been growing slowly in Belgium over the last five years, mainly in the form of geothermal heat pumps or ground-source heat pumps (GSHP). However, shallow geothermal installations have been increasing at a faster rate than deep geothermal energy. Shallow geothermal installation development is expected to grow more rapidly as energy obligations for new buildings and renovations are steadily strengthened. In addition, a minimal share of renewable energy use is obligated to start in 2014. Differences in deep geothermal development between the regions, depends on the geological situations, but also on the legislative and regulatory environment. GSHP comprise by far the greatest proportion of geothermal applications in Belgium. Many new medium to large building in the public sector are now equipped with GSHP. The total number of GSHP is expected to increase from 13,085 in 2010 to 22,613 in 2015, with total installed capacity increasing from 157 MWt to 198.7 MWt and annual energy use is now 756.4 TJ/yr. The majority (estimated at 80%) of applications are Borehole Thermal Energy Storage Systems (BTES), and only 5% Aquifer Thermal Energy Storage (ATES), and the remaining 15% horizontal loop systems. Geothermal water is used directly in several district heating systems and for waste water treatment as part of heat cascading system.

Taken from: John W. Lund and Tonya L. Boyd
Published in Direct Utilization of Geothermal Energy 2015 Worldwide Review

Total thermal installed capacity in MWt:117.9
Direct use in TJ/year546.97
Direct use in GWh/year151.9
Capacity factor0.15

No country update report was received for Belgium, thus data from WGC 2000 and WGC2005 will be utilized along with some updated material on geothermal heat pumps (Lund et al., 2005; EurObserv’ER, 2009). Since, only an abstract was submitted in 2005 and data from WGC2000 was used at that time (Berckmans and Vandenberghe, 1998). Geothermal energy used in the country is focused on shallow applications with the geothermal heat pump market growing significantly over the past few years, with the open-loop type being the most common. Most applications are in the eastern provinces. Aquifer thermal energy storage is also being utilized in a number of locations.

The total estimated installed capacity and use is:

space heating 2.1 MWt and 53.8 TJ/yr;
greenhouse heating 0.9 MWt and 22.1 TJ/yr;
aquaculture 0.3 MWt and10.1 TJ/yr;
agricultural drying 0.5 MWt and 13.1 TJ/yr;
swimming pool 0.1 MWt and 8.1 TJ/yr.

The estimated geothermal heat pumps based on 2008 data is 9,500 units (up from 5,000 in 2005), with an installed capacity of 114.0 MWt. Using 1,500 full load heating hours per year and a 3.5 COP in the heating mode, the energy use is estimated at 439.77 TJ/yr.

Thus, the total capacity and use in the country is 117.90 MWt and 546.97 TJ/yr.

Taken from the paper by John W. Lund, Derek H. Freeston, and Tonya L. Boyd: "Direct Utilization of Geothermal Energy 2010 Worldwide Review"; published in Proceedings of the World Geothermal Congress 2010, Bali, Indonesia, 25-29 April 2010