SEOUL, Aug. 11 (Korea Bizwire) — Incheon Port is set to adopt one of the largest geothermal heating systems in South Korea at new international passenger and cruise terminals currently under construction, a move that is expected to result in energy savings of nearly 70 percent every year.
The Incheon Port Authority (IPA) announced on Thursday that a new cruise terminal and international passenger terminal scheduled to be completed by next October and June 2019, respectively, will adopt a geothermal heating system that will utilize heat captured 450 meters underground to keep the new facilities both cool and heated.
The system scheduled to be adopted at the new international passenger terminal is attracting special attention as it boasts a capacity of 7,000 kilowatts, the largest to be used for a single building to date in South Korea.
Though installation expenses are often twice as expensive on average compared to electric heating systems, geothermal heating systems consume only 30 percent as much energy, massively slashing energy waste and allowing users to recoup the investment within three or four years.
According to the IPA, a floodgate control office that was built in 2012 was able to save 30 million won ($26,235) in electricity bills each year, thanks to the geothermal heating system it is equipped with.
“Regardless of the temperature above ground, geothermal heat keeps the ambient temperature at around 15 degrees Celsius which, compared to wind and solar power, is a safer source of energy,” an official at the IPA said.
“We plan to continue to use environment-friendly renewable energy.”
The IPA’s announcement falls in line with the pro-renewable energy stance of President Moon Jae-in, who has promised to denuclearize South Korea and raise the country’s reliance on renewable energy up to 20 percent by 2030.
Last month, Seoul Metro received media attention for using renewable energy such as solar power and groundwater to operate air conditioning systems at a number of subway stations including Garak Market Station, the Line 5 section of Jongno 3-ga Station, and the headquarters of Seoul Metro.
Ashley Song (firstname.lastname@example.org)