The company was founded in 2007 and is in operation since 2010 and growing steadily. In 2016 it is planned to generate about 33 GWh heat. This will rise to more than 80 GWh in some years. The installed power demand is currently about 24 MW and will rise up to 50 MW.
About 10 to 15 deep geothermal heat- (and power-) plants have been constructed in the last 10 years in the greater Munich area in order to supply the population with heat from a renewable source. The current availability of cheap fossil energies (gas, oil) now threatens the investments and the acceptance of these companies.
The city of Garching (approx. 18.000 inhabitants, 17.000 incoming students and 23.000 workplaces) is a growing city and home of the biggest campus of the TU München and other big institutions like ESO, Max-Planck-Institutes and GE research.
In Southern Bavaria a hot water containing rock formation has been discovered for the potential heat supply of local buildings and in some cases also for power generation.
Some years ago the city of Garching (North of Munich) has invested together with the energy company Bayernwerk AG (an EON-company) to explore this resource. Now two drillings - about 2,300 m deep - supply hot thermal water with about 74°C at a rate of 100 liters per second. Future plans are to increase this rate up to 130 l/s. The heat is distributed by a newly constructed district heating network of about 20 km length (still expanding).
The German standards for the energy consumption of buildings distinguish between the total energy used and the amount of primary energy used. The primary energy is basically the weighted fossil energy. Factors are for example gas: 1.1 and electricity: 2.6. New buildings need to have a primary energy factor of 0.7 or lower. The primary energy factor of the EWG is 0.59, which makes the company a perfect energy supplier for newly planned buildings.
The current low costs for fossil energy like gas or oil put a high financial pressure on the young company EWG. Although its energy is more sustainable than fossils energies, the buying decision of potential clients is also or even mainly based on the price. The consequence for the EWG is that the heat must be produced even cheaper in the future. This means that the heat generation from the geothermal source has to be increased further and the buildings should be adapted as heat supply on a low temperature level suits the heat generation of the EWG better.