Use of minewater for geothermal & Heat/cold storage at City of Yellowknife (Canada)

City of Yellowknife, Canada
2010 - 2012
City of Yellowknife (CAN)

In 2005, the City of Yellowknife formed a community energy plan­ning committee to develop the City’s first community energy plan (CEP). The resulting CEP stated that one of the ways to secure the energy supply and to reduce the environmental and climate impact of heating and cooling is the development of a community energy system (CES) using recovered mine heat from nearby Con Mine.

In order to investigate this possibility, to the City conducted an initial feasibility study on the mine resource and district energy system. The results of this study suggested on a preliminary basis that the Con Mine was a valuable thermal resource, and also proposed further areas of potential study. Some of the follow-up studies have been finalized, but a comprehensive investigation of the Con Mine heat resource has not yet been completed.

It is intended to use the water in the former gold mine as the heat source for a 4 MW heat pump. The heat pump will cover at least 50% of the anticipated heat demand of the district network. Biomass and heating oil fuels will be used to optimize costs, limit reliance on a single source, and allow fuel choice flexibility. Thirty nine existing buildings were identified as potential customers.

Services provided by VITO. The main objectives of the assignment are:

  • An in-depth assessment of the thermal resource of the Con Mine and an evaluation of the options to use the energy resource in a sustainable way;

The elaboration of a conceptual design and Class C cost estimate for the mine heat recovery system.