Advisory Group for Economic Affairs
Advisory Group for Economic Affairs
Our Advisory Group for Economic Affairs (TNO AGE) supports the government in making safe and responsible use of the deep subsurface, at depths of more than 500 metres. We help policymakers to make the energy transition possible by providing scientifically grounded advice on, amongst other things, geothermal energy and underground gas storage. We also provide information about these activities to society to allow efficient access to data and knowledge of the deep subsurface.
Permanent advisory role
TNO AGE advises the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (EZK) and State Supervision of Mines (SodM) using our scientific knowledge and information of the subsurface. Subjects include the implementation of the Mining Act, topics related to the energy transition, and the sustainable use of the deep subsurface. For this purpose, we collect data from operators about their (planned) on- and offshore activities at Dutch oil and gas fields, salt caverns, and geothermal wells. We receive, check, manage, and store data from all their activities and surveys, such as seismic and drilling campaigns.
We also support local governments by sharing knowledge and providing insight into the sustainable use of the deep subsurface. TNO AGE exclusively works for the government (and not for industry). We also monitor new activities in the oil, gas, and geothermal sectors, and developments regarding social issues and regulatory matters.
We advise the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy in the granting of permits for the storage of substances in the subsurface. Several large pilot projects on carbon storage are underway. Underground energy storage can also help the energy transition. A prime example is the study TNO AGE is conducting on the potential contribution of underground hydrogen storage. Hydrogen is seen as an energy carrier suitable for the storage of sustainable energy (e.g. solar and wind energy).
Geothermal energy is a sustainable source of energy with the capacity to provide a constant supply of energy. In order to meet safety standards, it is necessary to coordinate geothermal operations with other activities in the subsurface. TNO AGE advises the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (EZK) on the granting of permits for geothermal energy. We stimulate knowledge exchange by bringing regional and local stakeholders into contact with other (knowledge) institutions. This task is performed with EZK, SodM, and local governments.
Knowledge development and publicly available data
We publish public reports, up-to-date information, and data through the website, NLOG, which is managed by TNO’s Geological Survey of the Netherlands (GDN) on behalf of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy. Thus, we contribute to the knowledge development that is necessary to stimulate the use of the subsurface for the current and future supply of the Netherlands’ energy. We also explain this information and the meaning of the subsurface to citizens at regional information meetings.
More about our experts
Our researchers have a thorough knowledge of the stratigraphy and structures in the (deep) subsurface of the Netherlands. We are specialised in making models that predict the ‘behaviour’ of the subsurface, the risk of induced seismicity, and subsidence caused by mining activities. An example is the Groningen model chain and the SHRA. TNO AGE made this model together with colleagues from TNO AGS (Applied Geosciences) and the TNO Building unit. Each year, they also perform a seismic hazard and risk analysis. Our experts have a scientific background in (petroleum) geology, physics, geophysics, and/or environmental sciences.
In addition to our statutory task for the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (EZK), we have close collaboration with, amongst others, the State Supervision of Mines (SodM), and Energiebeheer Nederland (EBN). We support local governments by sharing knowledge and providing insight into the sustainable use of the deep subsurface. TNO AGE does not work for industry.
Interested in more information? Please contact Research Manager John Zegwaard using the blue ‘mail directly’ button below.