Friday, August 28, 2015

Japan, Indonesia, Philippines: South-East Asia is the Global Hot-Spot for Geothermal Projects

Japan, West looking to ride geothermal boom in Indonesia, Philippines (Nikkei Asian Review)

Development of geothermal power plants is picking up in Indonesia and the Philippines, providing opportunities for many Japanese and Western companies. Geothermal energy has few global titans, unlike fossil-fuel power, so Japanese and Western companies often partner with locals in various forms to take part in projects.

At the Sarulla Geothermal Power Plant under construction on northern Sumatra in Indonesia, a tower over 55 meters high has been built to capture water heated by magma underground. As drilling equipment makes a groaning noise while it digs to a depth of 2,000 meters, steam shoots up from a test well. A path for heavy equipment has been created by clearing the forest around the site.

The plant, which is to begin operations in November 2016, will be the world's largest. Its planned capacity of 330 MW is triple that of Japan's biggest geothermal plant, in Oita Prefecture. The price tag is estimated at more than 100 billion yen ($818 million).

Read More......

USA: Wyoming: How Seismic Imaging Improves Geothermal Drilling Success

Lecture: Advanced seismic imaging of geothermal reservoirs- is there a geothermal seismic signature?

Dr. John N. Louie, Nevada Seismological Laboratory, University of Nevada, Reno

12-1pm, Friday, September 4, University of Wyoming’s School of Energy Resources, Energy Innovation Center, Laramie, WY 82071

In the geothermal fields of the Great Basin physiographic province of western North America, drilling success or failure often depends on hitting fault or fracture zones. Advanced seismic reflection imaging has proven to be the only effective geophysical means of accurately targeting geothermal drilling. At target depths of 1 to 2km, the pay zones are often less than 0.1 km wide.

The development of advanced seismic imaging techniques has led to drilling success rates of 80% at some prospects. Advanced imaging is able to focus direct images of steeply dipping faults as seismic reflectors, allowing accurate planning of geothermal drill targets. The technology achieves the focusing and accurate location of structure and stratigraphy through thick piles of heterogeneous Tertiary volcanics, below complex surficial basin structure.

This capability is allowing researchers to use these seismic images to carry out advanced seismic attribute analyses, model testing, and verification of tectonic hypotheses. We are further refining the imaging methodologies, conducting joint inversions of seismic along with other geophysical measurements, and inspecting the amplitude-versus-offset (AVO) characteristics of geothermal reservoirs in Nevada.

Early Bird Discount for Geothermal Event Ends this Weekend

Save $100 on this premier geothermal energy event by registering before midnight on Sunday



The deadline for early-bird rates for registration for the biggest annual geothermal event is this Sunday, August 30. The GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo will bring together geothermal companies, academics, financiers, policy leaders, students, and other individuals to attend or exhibit at the event, to be held from September 20 to 23 at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, Reno, Nevada, USA.

Early birds who register before August 30 pay only $795 as GRC members or $895 if non-members. The non-member registration includes GRC membership through 2016. Students with a current identification card from an accredited institution pay just $5 which also includes GRC membership through 2016. Registration to the GRC Annual Meeting also includes entry to the GEA Energy Expo.

Registration is available from the GRC website at www.geothermal.org. A Preliminary Program complete with a Registration Form is available to view and download. However, the GRC recommends online registration through a securedconnection. The link is also available on the front page of the GRC website at www.geothermal.org.

The deadline for discounted hotel room rates is this Monday, August 31. Hotel room reservations can be made by following a link here.

This is the premier gathering to learn about the latest developments in geothermal energy. Last year, the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo hosted over 1,400 representatives from more than 39 countries. In 2015, an even broader international attendance is anticipated.

The GRC Annual Meeting will offer technical, policy, and market conference sessions, educational seminars, tours of local geothermal and renewable energy projects, and numerous networking opportunities.

The GEA Expo floor features a unique opportunity for leaders in the business to showcase their projects, equipment, services and state of the art technology to the geothermal community.

For more information about the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, Reno, Nevada, USA visit www.geothermal.org or call (530) 758-2360.

Science & Technology: Difficulties of 3-D Imaging of Earth's Mantle

What Lies Deep in the Mantle Below? (EOS)


For decades, scientists have probed Earth's remote mantle by analyzing how seismic waves of distant earthquakes pass through it. But we are still challenged by the technique's limitations.

Deep within Earth’s interior, in the brittle lithosphere and in the viscous asthenosphere below it, magma collects and ultimately feeds erupting volcanoes on Earth’s surface. This magma holds keys to understanding the processes that create island chains like Hawaii.

However, scientists can map the mantle—or any part of Earth’s interior—only by using remote sensing techniques. The most important such technique is seismic tomography.

Read More.........

USA: New NREL Report Details Economic Potential of Geothermal and Other Renewable Energies

Estimating Renewable Energy Economic Potential in the United States: Methodology and Initial Results (NREL)

This report describes a geospatial analysis method to estimate the economic potential of several renewable resources available for electricity generation in the United States applied to several renewable generation technologies under a variety of assumptions—including land-based wind, utility photovoltaics (UPV), distributed photovoltaics (DPV), hydropower, geothermal (hydrothermal resource only), and biopower (dedicated combustion plants only, not including co-firing), primarily from a 2014 perspective.

Geothermal (hydrothermal resources only) is estimated to provide 130 – 150 TWh of annual potential, which appears only in the West (Pacific and Mountain Census divisions), consistent with the location of existing generation.

This range represents from 1.6 to nine times total U.S. geothermal generation in 2013. The high end
of the range is two-thirds of geothermal (hydrothermal resources only) annual technical generation potential of 278 TWh. For Primary Cases 2 and 3, potential appears only in the West (Pacific and Mountain Census divisions), consistent with the location of existing generation. California garners two-thirds of the estimated national annual potential, with three other states having potential of at least 8 TWh, compared to 2 states in Primary Case 1.

Sign up for a seminar that will explain the methodology behind the report

Read More........

East Africa: Geothermal Developer Wins Big in Regional Power Industry Awards

KenGen scores double win at the East African Power Industry Awards (EAPIC)


The Kenya Electricity Generating Company or KenGen scored a double win at the inaugural East African Power Industry Awards in Nairobi on Thursday evening when the utility won the Outstanding Clean Power Award and also took top place in the Excellence in Power Generation category.

The awards honor the outstanding power professionals and projects in the East African region and the sold-out gala dinner took place during the East African Power Industry Convention (EAPIC) that gathered more than 1200 energy professionals in the Kenyan capital this week.

KenGen won in the Outstanding Clean Power Project category for the Olkaria Expansion Project, , Kenya. The judges commented “The final piece in one of the largest geothermal power projects in the world. Making Kenya a world leader in Geothermal energy and significantly contributing to bringing down the cost of power in Kenya by directly offsetting thermal based generation”.

KenGen also won in the Excellence in Power Generation category.

Read More.......

Taiwan: Geothermal Conference, October 1-3

2015 International Conference on Geothermal Energy in Taiwan (NEPII Geothermal Energy and Gas Hydrate Focus Center & Department of Geosciences, NTU)


Taiwan is located at the margin of young orogenic belt which the Philippine Sea plate collides with Asian continental margin. It is characteristic that the geothermal manifestations and hot springs are widely distributed in the island and has great potential to explore and develop the geothermal heat for power plant. A 3 MW pilot power plant, therefore, was constructed in 1981 and terminated in 1993 in the Chingshui area of Ilan, northeastern Taiwan. Recently, about 1 GWe and 33 GWe of installed capacities have been assessed for traditional and deep geothermal resources, separately.

Important dates:
  • Deadline for submission of abstracts: August 31st, 2015
  • Date of acceptance announcement: September 7th, 2015
  • Deadline for reduced conference fee and accommodation reservation: September 15th, 2015

Registration.......                              More Information..........

Thursday, August 27, 2015

El Salvador: Drilling Starts on Well for 10 MW Geothermal Power Plant

Salvadorian Government Opens New Geothermal Energy Well (CEL)

The Salvadoran government has announced the start of drilling activities for a geothermal well in Chinameca, department of San Miguel, some 138 kilometers east of the capital, San Salvador.

The Comisión Ejecutiva Hidreléctrica del Río Lempa (CEL) estimates the new well will produce from eight to 10 megawatts of geothermal energy by 2017. CEL president, David Antonio Lopez, said that the investment is estimated at $7.5 million USD.

The CHI 6A well is in the Chinameca Geothermal field, which, as a whole, is estimated to have a capacity of 50 megawatts, hopefully achieved by 2019. The drilling of four more wells for production and reinjection is expected later this year. The production wells reach a reservoir temperature of between 240 and 260 degrees Celsius at a depth between 1,800 and 2,000 meters.

Read More.......

USA: Biggest Oil Field Services Firm to Exhibit at Geothermal Event

Schlumberger will still be biggest following Cameron deal (FuelFix.com)

Schlumberger and Cameron are due to exhibit at the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo


Though Schlumberger’s position as the biggest oil field services firm in Houston will stay the same following its deal to acquire Cameron International, the corporate map of Houston’s biggest energy companies will look a lot different soon following the crude crash.

On Wednesday, Schlumberger said it would buy Cameron for $12.7 billion in one of the largest oil and gas industry deals of 2015.

Schlumberger had $48.6 billion in revenue in 2014, and will maintain its position as the biggest oil field services company in the world following Wednesday’s deal.

But the deal that emerged in Nov. 2014 that would merge Schlumberger’s next closest rivals, Halliburton and Baker Hughes, will create a much more competitive challenger in that sector. Halliburton earned $32.9 billion in revenue in 2014, and Baker Hughes had $24.6 billion.

City of Reno Touts its Geothermal Energy


The host city of the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo is proud of its efforts to use more renewable energy. More-so, the "biggest little city in the world" is very aware of the geothermal energy resource in its back-yard.


Reno is the only sizeable U.S. city that produces enough geothermal energy to meet its entire residential load


Extracts from the resolution:
WHEREAS,  Nevada ranks first in geothermal resources with 567 megawatts in production or under development with the potential to produce up to 3,700 megawatts and Nevada is #1 in the nation for geothermal energy production per capita; generating over 110 watts per person; and
WHEREAS, Reno is the only sizeable U.S. city that produces enough geothermal energy to meet its entire residential load...............

Reserve your Room for GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo

Discounted room rates for GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo ends Monday

Room rates for this prestigious event are set to increase next week when the deadline for discounted rates expires.


All the events and accommodation at the biggest annual geothermal event are in one location, the luxurious Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, the only resort in the United States whose heating source is totally provided from geothermal energy produced on the immediate property.

Reserve your room using the dedicated website for GRC and GEA hotel room reservations.

Discounted room rates end August 31.

Turkey: First 47.4 MW Unit of Efeler Geothermal Plant Completed

First Unit of Efeler Geothermal Plant Reported in Full Operation (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development)

The 170 MW Efeler geothermal plant is being built by a subsidiary of Güriş Holding, a leading Turkish renewable energy company. The plant’s five units – three of them already operational – are situated near the western town of Germencik, in the Buyuk Menderes Graben, the area in Turkey with the greatest potential for geothermal energy.

Science & Technology: Geothermal Energy to be Included on Innovative Education Aid

Energy on a Sphere (DOE)

With the emergence of open resources and new technologies, Americans today have scads of knowledge at their fingertips. Yet sifting through data is a major barrier for most. By visualizing global trends, however, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has found a way to see earth science information rolled out in colorful maps on an animated 6-foot globe. They call it Science On a Sphere, and its popularity is growing. In fact, the display is now in more than 120 museums and science-technology centers worldwide.

The U.S. Energy Department (DOE) has joined the game, releasing renewable energy-related content about sources such as geothermal, solar and wind. We’re tapping this entertaining vehicle to educate America about renewable energy and the range of sustainable energy options.

Read More.......

East Africa: Expanded Power Grid Will Help Expand Renewable Energy Development

East Africa sees regional power links ready in three years (BDlive)

Power lines connecting the east African states of Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya and Ethiopia are expected to be completed within the next three years, helping improve supplies and power trading, a senior Kenyan official said on Thursday.

A high-voltage line between Ethiopia and Kenya will be ready in 2017, a Kenya-Uganda link will be complete by the end of 2016, and a Kenya-Tanzania connection will be working in 2018, said Joseph Njoroge, principal secretary at Kenya’s Energy and Petroleum Ministry.

The Kenya-Ethiopia link will be a 500 kilovolt (kV) line, while the lines to Uganda and Tanzania will be 400kV. The line to Uganda would then connect Rwanda and Burundi. All the states, except for Ethiopia, are part of the East African Community trade bloc.

"In another two to three years, we should be having interconnections of Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania," Mr Njoroge told a regional power conference.

"We would expect that with such interconnections, we should take advantage of the huge renewable resources that we have in this region," Mr Njoroge said.

USA, Hawaii: Governor Ige Presses for 100% Renewable Energy by 2045

Hawaii’s Governor Dumps Oil and Gas in Favor of 100 Percent Renewables (The Nation)

Governor David Ige dropped a bombshell. His administration will not use natural gas to replace the state’s petroleum-fueled electricity plants, but will make a full-court press toward 100 percent renewables by 2045. Ige’s decisive and ambitious energy vision is making Hawaii into the world’s most important laboratory for humankind’s fight against climate change.
Hawaii Governor David Ige
At the Asia Pacific Resilience Innovation Summit held in Honolulu, Hawaii, this week,

The Big Island of Hawaii has substantial geothermal potential, with an active volcano, but some native Hawaiians object to pursuing it lest the goddess of the volcano, Pele, be desecrated. On the other hand, other Hawaiians have been impressed by the positive experience of fellow Polynesians, the Maori of New Zealand, in profiting from geothermal energy on their land. Geothermal has the advantage for the Hawaiian grid of being steady and so able to provide baseload support offsetting the variability (called “intermittency”) of wind and solar, which can be generated only at some times of the day.

Read More.......

Philippines: New Owners of Biliran Geothermal Project

Nickel Asia unit buys 60% of Biliran geothermal firm (BusinessWorld Online Edition)

A subsidiary of Nickel Asia Corp. has moved to acquire a majority stake in renewable energy firm Biliran Geothermal, Inc. (BGI), owner of the contract to build a 100 MW geothermal facility in Leyte province.

In a statement yesterday, Nickel Asia unit Emerging Power, Inc. (EPI) and Icelandic company Orka Energy announced the signing of an agreement last Monday that would “eventually give EPI 60% ownership of Biliran Geothermal, Inc. (BGI) subject to the approval of regulatory bodies.”

BGI holds a 25-year geothermal energy contract that covers a 260-kilometer resource area in the province of Biliran. BGI already drilled eight wells in the southern part of the concession area, the companies said, noting that the site is estimated to supply about 100 MW of power to the grid. The northern portion is expected to generate another 170 MW once developed, according to the statement.

Read More.......

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Chile: Overview of the Cerro Pabellón Geothermal Project & of Geothermal in South America

Plant in Chile Opens South America’s Doors to Geothermal Energy (Inter Press Service)

Cerro Pabellón could open the door to geothermal development not only in this country but in South America.


Credit: Marianela Jarroud/IPS
Chile, a land of volcanoes and geysers, has started building South America’s first geothermal plant, which would open a door to this kind of renewable energy in this country that depends largely on fossil fuels.

The Cerro Pabellón geothermal project is “immensely important for the Chilean state, which started geothermal exploration and drilling over 40 years ago,” but no initiative had taken concrete shape until now, Marcelo Tokman, general manager of the state oil company, ENAP, told IPS.

Located in the rural municipality of Ollagüe, 1,380 km north of Santiago, in the Andes highlands in the region of Antofagasta, Cerro Pabellón “will not only be the first geothermal plant in Chile and South America, but will also be the first in the world to be built at 4,500 meters above sea level,” Tokman added.

Iran: 50 MW Geothermal Plant to Be Online "Within Two Years"

Iran builds Mideast’s first geothermal plant (Press TV)

Iran is building the Middle East’s first geothermal power plant at the foot of an inactive volcanic peak as the country is racing to meet a runaway demand for electricity by its growing population. 

The pilot station in northwestern Meshguin Shahr in the Ardabil province is projected to come on stream in the next two years, putting Iran in the club of two dozen nations with the geothermal power generation capacity.

The 50 MW project is in line with Iran’s bid to expand its clean energy mix which is dominated by fossil fuels. Geothermal power is cheaper and more reliable than other renewable energy sources, such as thermal or hydro power.

USA: Another Oil/Gas/Geothermal Services Company Merger

Schlumberger to Buy Cameron International for $12.7 Billion (Wall Street Journal)

Both companies are due to exhibit at the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo


Schlumberger Ltd. on Wednesday said it agreed to buy Cameron International Corp. for about $12.74 billion in cash and stock, the latest move by the world’s biggest oil-field services company as the industry struggles with lower prices and rising supply.

The price tag values Houston-based Cameron—which makes drilling equipment and supplies maintenance equipment to pipelines, refineries and wells—at $66.36 a share, a 56.3% premium to Tuesday’s closing price.

This deals followed Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s nearly $70 billion offer for Britain’s BG Group PLC and Halliburton’s $35 billion deal to acquire smaller oil-field services rival Baker Hughes Inc.

Last month, Halliburton and Baker Hughes agreed to extend until at least Nov. 25 the Justice Department’s antitrust review period of their merger. The companies are the number two and three oil-field servicers, respectively.

USA, Colorado: Geothermal Conference in Pagosa Springs

2015 Pagosa Verde Symposium

27-28 August, Pagosa Springs, Colorado, USA


The fourth Pagosa Verde Symposium – Community Benefits of Renewable Energy and Sustainable Agriculture – is Thursday and Friday, August 27 and 28, at the Aragon Community Center in Pagosa Springs, Colorado.

Since 2012, the annual Pagosa Verde Symposium has hosted experts from academia, government agencies, and private businesses to southwest Colorado to explore appropriate economic growth. The 2015 theme focuses on direct use geothermal and other technologies. Keynote speakers and expert panelists will emphasize sustainable economic diversity. Participants can look forward to discussion of Colorado’s conservation of natural resources, renewable energy projects, and 21st century agriculture.

More Information.........                    Register..........

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Austria: Geothermal Dialogue Discusses Ways to Advance Industry

The CIF and geothermal - generating debate, knowledge and power (Climate Investment Fund)

Photo by: CPI
Geothermal power is one of the leading alternatives to fossil fuel based generation given its affordability, its flexibility, and the fact it can operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, unlike some other forms of renewable energy. However, its development is marked by high upfront costs and resource risks which necessitates public sector engagement and can discourage private sector participation.

In an effort to further understand the role of public sector and the most cost-effective measures to scale-up geothermal development in developing and emerging countries, including through facilitation of private sector finance, CIF, together with Climate Policy Initiative (CPI), hosted the Third Geothermal Dialogue in Vienna. It was followed by a Country Knowledge Exchange to facilitate knowledge and idea sharing amongst countries supported by the CIF. The learnings form both events are included in the new CIF/CPI report Lessons on the Role of Public Finance in Deploying Geothermal Energy in Developing Countries.

Early Bird Registration Deadline for GRC Annual Meeting is This Week

Save $100 on this premier geothermal energy event by registering before midnight on Sunday



The deadline for early-bird rates for registration for the biggest annual geothermal event is this Sunday, August 30. The GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo will bring together geothermal companies, academics, financiers, policy leaders, students, and other individuals to attend or exhibit at the event, to be held from September 20 to 23 at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, Reno, Nevada, USA.

Early birds who register before August 30 pay only $795 as GRC members or $895 if non-members. The non-member registration includes GRC membership through 2016. Students with a current identification card from an accredited institution pay just $5 which also includes GRC membership through 2016. Registration to the GRC Annual Meeting also includes entry to the GEA Energy Expo.

Registration is available from the GRC website at www.geothermal.org. A Preliminary Program complete with a Registration Form is available to view and download. However, the GRC recommends online registration through a securedconnection. The link is also available on the front page of the GRC website at www.geothermal.org.

The deadline for discounted hotel room rates is this Friday, August 28. Hotel room reservations can be made by following a link here.

This is the premier gathering to learn about the latest developments in geothermal energy. Last year, the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo hosted over 1,400 representatives from more than 39 countries. In 2015, an even broader international attendance is anticipated.

The GRC Annual Meeting will offer technical, policy, and market conference sessions, educational seminars, tours of local geothermal and renewable energy projects, and numerous networking opportunities.

The GEA Expo floor features a unique opportunity for leaders in the business to showcase their projects, equipment, services and state of the art technology to the geothermal community. Exhibit space still remains but is selling quickly.

For more information about the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, Reno, Nevada, USA visit www.geothermal.org or call (530) 758-2360.

For information on how to sponsor this event, contact Anh Lay, GRC at (530) 758-2360 X100 or alay@geothermal.org.

Canada: Grande Prairie Funds Geothermal Study

City moving forward with geothermal energy study (Big Country 93.1 FM News & Sports)

The City of Grande Prairie in northwest Alberta, Canada is committing $20,000 to a study on geothermal energy development.

Environmental Stewardship Manager Michelle Gairdner says they have looked at the success of geothermal energy in other places. "Iceland was the one that I found really interesting in that 80% of their energy is being generated through geothermal, so the cost is substantially lower. It's much more efficient than any other renewables such as wind or solar, so it's much more cost effective."

As for the timeline of the study Gairdner says "They anticipate to start towards the end of this year, and hope to have something by the beginning of 2017 that would give, and again that's the is it feasible and some of the economic modelling that it would cost to go forward and do a project." The study is being done by the University of Alberta with support from Alberta Innovates.

Read More.......

USA: Important Milestone for Geothermal Data Repository

Geothermal Data Repository Reaches 500 Submissions (DOE/GTO)

A map of the United States highlighting the locations of GDR submissions. Critical data about the subsurface is added to the GDR from sites all across the country. Credit: Jon Weers, NREL.
July 15 marked an important milestone for the Energy Department’s Geothermal Data Repository (GDR), as the online geoscience tool received its 500th submission since its launch in March 2012.

 The Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO) deployed the GDR to store all of the data collected from office-funded projects, but also to help accelerate the research and development of geothermal energy resources by providing researchers, academia, and industry with access to this project information. 

The GDR is one of many members of the Energy Department’s National Geothermal Data System (NGDS), which provides free access to millions of records of geothermal research and site demonstration data.

The DOE/GTO will be exhibiting at the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo, September 20-23, in Reno, Nevada, USA.

Read More........

Kenya: Menengai Geothermal Well Lets Off Steam

Helen Robinson, PhD student at Glasgow University was on hand to witness the discharging of steam from the MW-07 well at the Menengai geothermal field.

USA: News from the Geo Heat Pump Industry

Heat Exchange Industry News (Geothermal Exchange Organization)

The latest GEO Industry News is now available from the Geothermal Exchange Organization (GEO).

The Geothermal Exchange Organization, a 501(c)(6) non-profit trade association based in Springfield, Illinois, USA that advocates the environmental, energy efficiency and economic benefits of geothermal heat pump systems for heating and cooling applications in residential, commercial, and institutional buildings in the USA.

United Kingdom: 5th London Geothermal Symposium

The Fifth London Geothermal Symposium: Securing our Geothermal Future

Thursday 15th October 2015, The Geological Society, London 13:30-20:00


With new projects developing single well geothermal technology, interest in exploiting ultra low grade heat from abandoned mines plus several feasibility studies for the assessment of additional geothermal resources in Scotland, this event will highlight both current opportunities and future potential.

There will be presentations on geothermal heat only and power generation schemes delivered by representatives from industry, government and academia.

There will also be time for networking during the break and at the post conference drinks reception.

Register for this event here. Speakers, please register for the concessionary rate.

New Zealand: Maori Council and Top Energy Cooperate on Developing Geothermal Project

Iwi and council back geothermal deal (Radio New Zealand)

A Northland marae (meeting grounds), the Far North mayor and the chairman of Northland Regional Council's Māori Advisory Committee are all behind a power company's plans to develop the Ngāwhā geothermal field.

Top Energy is applying for consent to expand its geothermal power plant at Ngāwhā and has signed an agreement with the Ngāwhā Marae committee which both parties hope will lead to long-term benefits in the Far North.

Ngāwhā Marae near Kaikohe recently celebrated an agreement between Top Energy and the marae's komiti to work together on land collectively owned by Ngāti Rangi hapū members.

The advisor to the Ngāwhā Marae komiti, Chris Webster, said the decision on whether Top Energy would be given consent to carry out its joint project with Ngāwhā Marae was expected to be made before the end of September.

She said the 25 MW geothermal power station it plans to build should be in operation in about five to six years time.

Read More........

Monday, August 24, 2015

GRC Annual Geothermal Photo Contest - View all the Entries

36th Annual Geothermal Photo Contest

GRC 2015 - 36th Annual Geothermal Amateur Photography Contest


The Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) is pleased to present the entries for this years Annual Geothermal Photo Contest. In total, 51 photos are to be judged for impact, relevance, composition and technical quality.

The winners will be announced at the GRC Annual Member Meeting and Awards Luncheon, the climax to the 39th GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo being held at the Peppermill Resort Spa, Reno, Nevada, USA from September 20-23. The theme for this year’s meeting is “Geothermal: Always On”.

GRC appreciates the creativity and quality of all contest submissions.

Science & Technology: Eureka! Gold Found in Geothermal Waters!

Large amount of gold and silver found in reservoirs under volcanoes in New Zealand (Phys.Org)

A small team of researchers with members from institutions in the U.S. and New Zealand (3 of the 4 are GRC Members) has found that there are large deposits of gold and silver in at least six reservoirs beneath several volcanoes in New Zealand. In their paper published in the journal Geothermics, the team describes their investigation into geothermal systems in the V-shaped Taupo Volcanic Zone on New Zealand's North Island and just how much of the precious metal they believe is hiding down there.

As part of their study, the team found that magma heating water in the volcanic zone had been breaking down rocks for quite some time, releasing the gold and silver in them. Those metal particles then fell to the floor of reservoirs that are hundreds of meters deep. The natural process is similar to the way modern precious metals are obtained—lode bearing rock is crushed and then sifted using water—the heavier metals land at the bottom where they are retrieved. In their studies, the team found examples of gold at over 20 parts per billion, and silver at 2,000 ppb.

USA: Increase in Severe Weather Leading to Longer Power Outages

Berkeley Lab Releases Most Comprehensive Analysis of Electricity Reliability Trends (Berkeley Lab)

New report finds that increasingly severe weather is linked to longer lasting power outages


In the most comprehensive analysis of electricity reliability trends in the United States, researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and Stanford University have found that, while, on average, the frequency of power outages has not changed in recent years, the total number of minutes customers are without power each year has been increasing over time.

The researchers pinpointed what utilities and their regulators refer to as “major events,” or events generally related to severe weather, as the principal driver for this trend. “This finding suggests that increasingly severe weather events are linked to a 5-10% increase in the total number of minutes customers are without power each year,” said Berkeley Lab Research Scientist and Stanford PhD candidate, Peter Larsen, the lead author.


Australia: Another Company to Withdraw from Geothermal Exploration

Greenearth Energy Ltd Corporate Report (PDF)

Yet another Australian company has signaled a retreat from developing geothermal energy. In a corporate update Greenearth Energy, based in Melbourne, Victoria, announced a shift in focus away from geothermal exploration.

The company "...has identified three near-term corporate objectives that are being undertaken to more clearly align Greenearth’s public positioning with its operating activities. These will also enhance internal governance and business structures with the aim of increasing shareholder value. With the evolution of the company’s focus from geothermal exploration and development to commercializing renewable and clean technologies..."

Greenearth had been developing the 12 MWe Geelong Geothermal Power Project near Geelong, in the state of Victoria.

Kenya: University of Glasgow Fieldwork Resumes at Menengai Geothermal Field

Menengai Caldera fieldwork 2015

Blog by Helen Robinson, PhD student at Glasgow University


Following on from last year's fieldwork, girlsonfieldwork.blogspot.co.uk, this blog is all about the follow up work this year.

So after 6 months of preparation, funding applications and training in field techniques such as soil gas sampling and geophysics, along with finding 2 field assists. The time is here and I am finally back in "my caldera", Menengai, for 5 weeks of intense fieldwork and catching up with some great friends.

My two field assist, Mairi and Beth are first year undergraduates from the University of Glasgow and were successful in their applications to the Royal Geographical Society for an award as part of the Fieldwork Apprenticeship Scheme.

Read More.......

Indonesia: President Jokowi Urges Geothermal Energy Development

Indonesian govt. to focus on geothermal energy development: President Jokowi (ANTARA)

"Our geothermal energy is estimated at around 29,000 MW and we have not utilized that potential optimally"


President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has reiterated that the government is focused on geothermal development as a renewable source of energy in the country.

"We always use coal for power plants. Based on the huge potential for geothermal energy, we will focus on developing geothermal energy generation as a renewable energy source. Our geothermal energy is estimated at around 29,000 MW and we have not utilized that potential optimally," President Jokowi said on Saturday.

According to the President, the government had conducted a study related to geothermal energy that will be used as environmentally friendly renewable energy.

"To manage geothermal energy, the government will set up state-owned enterprises," the President stated.

Read More......

Indonesia, Costa Rica: Countries Sign Agreement to Cooperate on Geothermal Energy

RI, Costa Rica sign framework cooperation agreement (Jakarta Post)


Indonesia and Costa Rica will strengthen bilateral cooperation in various sectors following the signing of a framework cooperation agreement between the two countries, a Foreign Ministry official has said.

The acting head of the economic, finance and banking sub-directorate at the Foreign Ministry’s Central and East Europe directorate, Enjay Diana, said  that among the subjects of cooperation recently discussed by the two foreign ministers were cooperation in the field of renewable energy, especially geothermal energy; disaster mitigation; transnational organized crime elimination and mandatory consular notification.

“Indonesia is a country with a largest geothermal energy potential in the world. Meanwhile, more than 90 percent of energy needs in Costa Rica are covered with renewable energy, including geothermal energy,” said Enjay.

Read More.......

USA, Nevada: Senator Reid Calls for New Loan Fund to Promote Exploratory Drilling & Mapping

Ahead of Eighth Clean Energy Summit, Reid Releases Second Report On State Of Clean Energy in Nevada (News Release)

Renewed investment could lead to the annual development of approximately 800 MW of geothermal energy


Nevada Senator Harry Reid has released “Playing to Win in Clean Energy,” his second report on the state of clean energy in Nevada. Written as an update to his original 2012 document that detailed how Nevada’s renewable energy economy has been aided by coordinated federal and state actions, the new report highlights successes in Nevada’s clean energy sector and illustrates their positive impacts in every corner of the state. In the report he highlights the work of Ormat technologies in Nevada and suggests a plan to develop geothermal further:

Tens of thousands of megawatts of geothermal power potential could be developed, but it will
require a significant and sustained effort to support geothermal exploration and resource quantification.

The establishment of a new loan fund to promote exploratory drilling and to encourage mapping of the nation’s geothermal resource base would help to capture some of Nevada’s untapped geothermal resources.

Such a program would involve drilling and testing numerous (between 50 and 100) new exploration
wells in promising but unproven areas during the next few years, leading to the discovery and characterization of new electricity-grade resources.

If the United States were to allocate the same resources as it did to create the Strategic Petroleum Reserve ($4 billion) it could lead to the annual development of approximately 800 MW or 6.6 million MW/hrs of geothermal energy. The production of 800 MW annually would help to create between 4,000 and 6,000 construction jobs and between 750 and 800 full-time operations jobs.

Playing to Win in Clean Energy (PDF)

The 39th GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo will be held September 20-23 at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, Reno, Nevada.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Kenya: Olkaria Geothermal Plant Reducing the Equivalent of 149,632 tons of CO2 Per Year

Olkaria Geothermal Plant Reducing the Equivalent of 149,632 tons of CO2 Per Year (The World Bank)

By adding a third (35 MW) generator to an existing geothermal plant, the Olkaria II Unit 3 Geothermal Project is expanding Kenya’s renewable energy capacity and contributing about 276 GWh annually to greening the national grid. Located 132 km northwest of Nairobi, the geothermal plant is owned and operated by the Kenya Electricity Generating Company Limited (KenGen).

This geothermal expansion project is earning carbon credits under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). It is reducing the equivalent of 149,632 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2 ) per year by displacing thermal electricity that would otherwise be generated by fossil fuels. The project was registered with the UNFCCC in December 2010; the World Bank’s Community Development Carbon Fund is purchasing about 480,000 carbon credits from it.

The project is also using part of the carbon revenue to finance a community benefit plan (CBP) to help poor communities living close to the geothermal plant who depend mainly on farming and livestock. The CBP, designed to address priority needs, was developed in consultation with the beneficiary communities, KenGen, regional chiefs, and local councils.

Read More.......

USA, California: Early-Bird Pre-Registration Deadline for TOUGH Symposium 2015 is Next Week

Early-Bird Pre-Registration Deadline for TOUGH Symposium 2015 is Next Week (LBNL)

September 28–30, 2015, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), Berkeley, California



A symposium on applications and enhancements to the TOUGH codes for multiphase fluid, heat, and chemical transport will be held at LBNL. The TOUGH Symposium 2015 consists of oral and poster presentations, with proceedings published online, and includes a welcome reception and banquet dinner featuring an invited talk.  Short Courses on select TOUGH codes will be offered immediately preceding and following the Symposium. Selected papers will be submitted for inclusion in special issues of major scientific journals.

Registration is open!
The early-bird pre-registration deadline is August 27; on August 28, registration fees will increase.

Please register at: https://www.regonline.com/Register/Checkin.aspx?EventID=1718867. Berkeley Lab is a DOE National Laboratory with special processing for visitors. We strongly encourage you to register early so we can process your guest pass and paperwork in a timely manner.

More information........

30 Days to the 2015 GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo

30 Days to the 2015 GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo

Preliminary Program is available to view online, or download and print-out if you wish.

There are two methods of completing the registration process......we recommend registering online...........


1. Download the Registration Form (PDF) to your desktop.

Fill-in, saving as you progress. Print out and mail to:

GRC Annual Meeting
P.O. Box 1350,
Davis, CA 95617-1350

You can also attach the Registration Form (PDF) to an email and send to Anh Lay at alay@geothermal.org

Note: Speakers and Exhibitors only have the option of completing the PDF Registration Form - They cannot register online using the link below.

OR

2. We Recommend Registering Online........... 


Register Online at: https://eseries.geothermal.org

Iceland: SW Iceland Geothermal Areas “Overused”, Unsustainable

SW Iceland Geothermal Areas “Overused”, Unsustainable (Reykjavik Grapevine)

A geologist and a physicist say that some geothermal regions in southwest Iceland are being overused, rendering the practice ultimately unsustainable.

Gunnlaugur H. Jónsson, a professor of physics and a former employee of the National Energy Authority, told RÚV that two areas – Hengilssvæðið and Reykjanesskagann – are being overused for geothermal power. The search for new high-pressure vents has prompted the drilling of a new vent once a year. At this rate, the resource is rendered unsustainable.

Geologist Stefán Arnórsson agrees, adding that the pressure coming out of the vents has been steadily decreasing. Part of the problem has been planning, in that large power plants were built first in the area, instead of employing the more sustainable practice of building small power plants first, and building up from there.

Read More.......

Video: Geothermal Town

Geothermal Town (Discovery)

Nangong Village in China has plugged into the earth's geothermal power to heat up their water, transforming a rural farming village into a modern community with hot water in every home -- not to mention greenhouses and a tropical spa.

Taiwan: Committee Defers on Geothermal Project EIA

Committee Defers on Geothermal Project EIA (Taipei Times)

In a rare ruling on Wednesday, a multibillion-dollar geothermal project that proposes drilling geothermal wells thousands of meters deep in Yilan County was referred to the environmental impact assessment (EIA) grand assembly to decide whether a fourth meeting or a second-phase review is needed.

Headed by anti-nuclear activist and National Taiwan University professor Kao Cheng-yan (高成炎), the project proposes drilling 10 geothermal wells in Lize (利澤) in Yilan County’s Wujie Township (五結) over a 10-year period. A private venture, the project is expected to cost NT$10 billion (US$304.2 million) and would generate up to 101 megawatts (MW) of electricity per year, making it the largest thermal power station in the nation.

Read More......

Lessons on the Role of Public Finance in Deploying Geothermal Energy in Developing Countries

Lessons on the Role of Public Finance in Deploying Geothermal Energy in Developing Countries (CIP)

by Valerio Micale and Padraig Oliver


Over the last year, Climate Policy Initiative (CPI) has conducted analysis on behalf of the Climate Investment Funds with the aim of helping policymakers and development finance institutions understand which policy and financing tools to use in order to enable fast and cost-effective deployment of geothermal for electricity. The research involved high-level dialogues between public and private sector stakeholders to share findings and promote discussion, and three case studies on geothermal projects in Turkey, Kenya and Indonesia. The projects studied varied in size (ranging from 13 MW to 330 MW – the largest in the world), and in terms of the public-private development models used.

Our case studies show that the increase in tariffs needed to provide sufficient returns to incentivize private investment can be entirely offset by public measures addressing specific risks. As a result, by enabling private investment, governments can achieve the same amount of electricity generation while providing only 15-35% of the financial resources they would have spent had they built and operated projects themselves.

Read More.......                 Full Paper (PDF)........

USA, Nevada: Interactive Map of Nevada Geothermal Resources and Infrastructure

Interactive Map of Nevada Geothermal Resources and Infrastructure (AGI)


The Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology's interactive geothermal map is a compilation of GIS data, relevant to geothermal energy, from around the state. The map provides users the opportunity to view a wide range geothermal features in the state of Nevada, including geothermal sites of interest, geothermal well data, existing geothermal power plants, and transmission infrastructure.

Click here to access the interactive geothermal map.

The 39th GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo will be held September 20-23 at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, Reno, Nevada.

El Salvador Plans 150 MW Renewable Energy Auction

El Salvador Plans 150 MW Renewable Energy Auction (CleanTechnica)

102 MW geothermal capacity could be added by the end of 2021


El Salvador has announced plans to hold its second renewable energy auction as is looks to increase the share of sustainable energy sources in its electricity mix. The National Energy Council announced plans to auction 150 MW of renewable energy projects, with targets for operation by 2018.

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) will assist El Salvador in conducting this most recently announced auction. The Agency is optimistic about the future of renewable energy in the country. According to a recent assessment (PDF) by USAID, El Salvador could add 170 MW of solar power capacity by 2016, 40 MW wind energy capacity by 2017, 81.5 MW biomass-based power capacity by the end of this year, and 146 MW hydro power capacity and 102 MW geothermal capacity by the end of 2021.

In 2014, hydro power, geothermal and biomass-based power projects supplied 59% of El Salvador’s electricity while the balance came from fossil fuels.

Read More.......

Indonesia:

Ministry Mulls Spinning off Pertamina’s Geothermal Assets (Jakarta Post)

The Indonesia Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry is considering making the Pertamina subsidiary that runs the geothermal business a separate entity so that the government will be able to exert direct control over its expansion.

The ministry’s director general for new, renewable energy and energy conservation, Rida Mulyana, said separating Pertamina Geothermal Energy (PGE) from the parent company would enable the government to inject funds for expansion.

“We are thinking of how to accelerate development of geothermal projects. PGE already has the capacity and geothermal working areas. However, its expansion still depends on the parent firm and the government currently cannot inject any funds directly,” Rida said.

He added that two options were now on the table for PGE, either making it a fully owned state enterprise or restructure it to be a special public service agency.

Read More......

Thursday, August 20, 2015

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

Exhibit at the Biggest Annual Geothermal Event of the Year!

The GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo is just 30 days away! In addition to the GRC Technical Session, Workshops, Fieldtrips and various networking opportunities, the trade show, run by the U.S. Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) is filling up fast. As of August 20, 95 companies from around the world had signed up.


Entrance to the GEA trade show is free with GRC Annual Meeting registration. If you are interested in attending the GEA Geothermal Energy Expo only please visit the GEA website. Exhibitors can now register for the trade show.

Climate Change:

July Was Earth's Hottest Month on Record (BBC News)

July was the hottest month on Earth since records began, averaging 16.6 C (61.9 F), according to US scientists. That is 0.08 degrees higher than the previous record, set in July 1998 - a significant margin in weather records.

Scientists at the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said in a report that they expect 2015 to be the hottest year on record. Nine of the 10 hottest months since records began in 1880 have occurred since 2005, they NOAA report said.

Scientists say global climate change and the impacts of the El Nino weather phenomenon are behind the record temperatures.

Read More........

New Zealand:

Hui (A Māori Assembly) About Geothermal Plant to be Held (Radio New Zealand)

22 August, Ngāwhā Marae, Kaikohe, New Zealand


People concerned about Top Energy's plans to further develop its geothermal power plant at Ngāwhā will have an opportunity to ask questions.

The Ngāwhā marae komiti, which signed a deal with the power company, said it hoped the initiative would lead to development at and around the geothermal field near Kaikohe.

The deal has raised concerns amongst some local Māori who are worried that it could damage the precious springs and threaten their Waitangi Tribunal Claim which the geothermal field is part of.
But komiti adviser Chris Webster said everyone in the community would be given the chance to have their say and ask Top Energy scientists questions.

"The marae komiti members will speak for about 10 to 15 minutes and then people can also ask questions of the scientists," Ms Webster said.

"So on the 22nd of August we're having a big hui at Ngāwhā Marae to celebrate the signing and the participation of the marae trustee committee and the hapū of Ngāti Rangi."

She said the project would lead to the creation of employment for people mainly in Kaikohe.

Indonesia:

Pertamina Geothermal Energy Working on Four Geothermal Power Plants (Republika)

Pertamina Geothermal Energy (PGE), a subsidiary of Indonesian state-owned oil and gas company Pertamina, is working on four geothermal power plant projects simultaneously.

PGE's Corporate Secretary Tafif Azimudin today said the four power plant projects are located in Ulubelu (Lampung province), Lahendong (North Sulawesi province), Karaha (West Java province) and Lumut Balai (South Sumatra province).

"PGE is the only company in the world that works on four geothermal development projects simultaneously," he said.

According to Azimudin the four geothermal power plants, with a total capacity of 415 MW, are targeted to be completed by 2017. They are Lumut Balai with a capacity of 4x55 MW, Karaha 1x30 MW, Kerinci (Jambi province) 1x55 MW, and Hululais (Bengkulu province) 2x55 MW.