Friday, December 19, 2014

Papua New Guinea:

Papua New Guinea Seeks EOI For Geothermal and Other Renewable Power Plants (Volcanex)

State-owned PNG Power Ltd (PPL) is calling for expressions of interest (EOI) from interested firms who wish to be considered for operating renewable energy power plants in PPL’s isolated diesel centers under an IPP BOOT arrangement. Centers considered for this development include Aitape, Alotau, Arawa, Finschaffen, Kerema, Daru, Manus, Maprik, Vanimo, Wewak, Rabaul, Kimbe/Bialla and Samarai.

The explicit objective of this EOI and subsequent competitive procurement process is to (partly) replace high cost diesel generation with Hydro, Geothermal, Solar, Biomass or Wind power, so as to achieve a financial benefit for PPL and the electricity consumers. PPL is interested in outstanding individual project proposals as well as strategic partnerships that involve several centers and/or technologies.

PPL invites prospective bidders to express interest in being considered in a short-list to be invited later to submit full proposals for the development of renewable energy power plants under Power Purchase Agreement with PPL. All EOI submissions are to be received by PPL no later than 4.:00 pm Friday the 30th of January 2015.

Download EOI document.............                     Read More........

Iceland:

Iceland Drilling Wins Drilling Contract in Reykjanes (IDC)

IDC Rig Thor drilling for geothermal in Reykjanes peninsula.
(Courtesy Iceland Drilling)
As reported on Iceland Drilling's LinkedIn website, HS Orka hf. and Iceland Drilling (IDC) have signed a drilling contract for HS Orka‘s geothermal plants in Reykjanes. The contract covers three wells with the option to expand for five more. Following a price survey conducted by HS Orka, it was decided to award the contract to IDC.

The drilling rig Thor, is wholly powered by connection to the existing power grid. All energy on the grid comes from HS Orka's environmentally friendly power plants. This saves almost two hundred thousand liters of oil for each well, which is important both from an environmental and economic standpoint.

USA, California:

2015 Imperial Valley Renewable Energy Summit (Imperial Valley News)

The GRC sponsored last year's event

11-13 March, Winterhaven, California


The 8th Annual Imperial Valley Renewable Energy Summit will be held March 11-13, 2015, and will focus on the ever changing - and expanding - opportunities for development in the region where the full spectrum of renewable energy production continues to thrive.

The theme for the Summit that will be held at the Quechan Resort in Winterhaven, California is “Imperial Valley: Powering New Frontiers.”

There is no question that the Imperial Valley is the land of opportunity for renewable energy development. Geothermal, solar and wind power plants in the region already export well over 1,000 megawatts of renewable energy to surrounding communities. With the completion of renewable energy projects under construction, the Imperial Valley will be producing about 2,500 megawatts of renewable energy, making the region a key player in California’s ability to meet the renewable portfolio standards. Studies indicate the region has the potential to produce more than 25,000 megawatts of renewable energy.

Read More........

USA:

Power Sector Employment Declines, Except for Renewable Electricity Generators (EIA)

Jobs in the geothermal energy sector have grown by 9% since 2011.


The U.S. electric power generation sector lost more than 5,800 jobs from January 2011 through June 2014 despite a gain of nearly 1,800 non-hydro renewable electricity generation jobs, according to the latest data available from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

All four categories of non-hydro renewables have seen gains in power generation jobs since 2011. Solar has led the way, with the number of jobs related to the operation of solar generation installations in the electric power sector more than tripling in that timeframe. Although wind jobs have grown at a slower rate than solar since 2011, increasing 16%, there are still more than twice as many wind jobs as solar jobs in the electric power sector. Jobs in the geothermal energy sector have grown by 9% since 2011.

Read More.......

Philippines:

PSALM Cedes Mt. Apo Geothermal Plants (Manila Standard Today)

Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) is set to hand over the management of the contracts of the Mt. Apo 1 and 2 geothermal power plants in Mindanao and the strips of energy deals of the Unified Leyte geothermal power plants in Visayas to the winning bidders on Dec. 26.

FDC Misamis Power Corp. of the Gotianun group emerged as the highest bidder for the management of the  output of the Mt. Apo (Mindanao I and II) geothermal power plants in September. The company offered P128 million in monthly payment for PSALM’s first Mindanao IPPA.

The Mt. Apo 1 and Mt. Apo 2 geothermal power plants are, located in Kidapawan City, North Cotabato, have a rated capacity of 54.24 megawatts each. The cooperation period for  the Mt. Apo 1 and 2 plants covers 25 years and will expire on Feb. 15, 2022 and June 17, 2024, respectively.

Read More.......

St Lucia:

St Lucia Goes After Geothermal Energy (Nation News)

Ormat is in negotiations to develop a 15-30 MW Geothermal power plant


(Courtesy CIA.gov)
St Lucia is set to begin exploring the possibilities of geothermal energy in 2015.

Minister for Sustainable Development, Energy, Science and Technology, Dr James Fletcher said that if successful, the country’s geothermal resource has the potential to produce about 50 per cent of the country’s energy demand.

“It all depends on what the exploration finds, but we believe that we can get as much as 30 megawatts, which is about 50 per cent of our demand right now,” he said. “We are looking at anywhere between a 15 and 30 megawatt plant for Soufriere.”

The government has reached an advanced stage in its negotiations with the developing company—Ormat Technologies Inc.

Read More.......

Heat Exchange:

Heat Exchange Industry News (Geothermal Exchange Organization)

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

GEO Industry News is an electronic publication of 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.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Japan:

Japan Toughens Rules for Renewable Energy Incentive Payments (Bloomberg)

Japan’s trade ministry is setting stricter rules for production and sales of renewable energy in what it says is a drive to speed up development of projects and ensure stable power supply.

Japan introduced a renewable energy incentive program in July 2012 after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, offering some of the highest rates for solar-produced electricity in the world.

The rates attracted floods of solar applications, so much so that utilities who are required to buy the power for their transmission grids say they are being overwhelmed. Plus, the supply is unstable.

As many renewable energy projects haven’t started even years after winning approval, the new rules allow utilities to strip a renewable energy provider of grid access if they miss the start date.

The same can happen if they fail to pay for access within a month of signing a contract, according to a document released by the ministry today.

Read More......

Global:

Seasons Greetings!


Global:

Geothermal Resources Council Announces New Board of Directors (GRC - News Release)

Katherine Young, Maria Richards, and Masami Nakagawa join the new GRC Board of Directors


The Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) is governed by a Board of Directors, elected by the general membership to 2-year terms. To provide continuity, half of the Board is elected every year. All GRC members are eligible for election to the Board of Directors.

The global GRC membership took part in the ballot in November, and the result was that three new members of the Board were elected:

  • Katherine Young: Senior energy analyst at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, Colorado, USA.
  • Maria Richards: Geothermal laboratory coordinator in the Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, Southern Methodist University (SMU), Dallas, Texas, USA.
  • Masami Nakagawa: Associate professor at Colorado School of Mines (CSM), Golden, Colorado, USA.

Katherine Young, Maria Richards and Masami Nakagawa
Katherine Young, Maria Richards and Masami Nakagawa join the seven other members who have been re-elected to the Board of Directors: Richard Campbell, James Lovekin, Joseph Moore, Louis Capuano III, Dennis Gilles, Roy Mink and Shigeto Yamada.

At the end of 2014, the GRC membership stands at over 1,450 from 49 different countries.

Photos of the new Board of Directors can be seen on the GRC Website at www.geothermal.org/BOD.html

France:

European Parliament City to be Heated by Geothermal Energy (francetv)

French energy company Fonroche has been awarded a research license to explore for geothermal resources in the city of Strasbourg, the capital and principal city of the Alsace region in eastern France and the official seat of the European Parliament.

Early in 2015, Fonroche will start drilling to 3,500 meters at the Illkirch and Eckbolsheim sites with an aim of producing enough geothermal energy to heat 80% of Strasbourg.

Read More......

USA:

Majority of Americans Prioritizes Developing Alternative Energy Sources (Pew Research Center - News Release)

The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center, conducted Dec. 3-7 among 1,507 adults, finds that the public are fully behind developing renewable energy resources in the U.S.A.

In broad terms, developing alternative energy is viewed as a more important priority than expanding the exploration and production of oil, coal and natural gas. By two-to-one (60% to 30%), more prioritize the development of alternative energy sources than expanded extraction of energy from traditional sources. However, attitudes on this question vary widely across demographic groups.

Adults under 30 express broad support for prioritizing alternative energy development over expanding traditional sources (74%-20%). By contrast, those 65 and older are roughly divided over whether developing sources such as wind, solar, [geothermal] and hydrogen is the more important priority (48%) or whether expanding production of oil, coal and natural gas should be given more priority (41%).

Read More......

USA, California:

The Geysers Geoscience Intern Opportunity

Calpine has announced a supervised position that will allow a geosciences student interested in a career in the geothermal industry to apply and enhance their knowledge of geothermal resource operation and development. The selected candidate will benefit from exposure to the operations of a well-established geothermal energy provider, familiarization with 3D model building and visualization software, and the relationship of subsurface geologic structure to surface mapping.

This position will require the individual to work a normal day shift. Limited overtime work (nights and weekends) may be required. This job will be based at The Geysers power plant near Middletown, California.

USA:

Geothermal Energy in 2014: Emerging Economies Power Up (CleanTechnica)

The U.S. GEA has released a series of figures and forecasts to finish off 2014, and in so doing highlighted the impact US geothermal power companies are having in emerging economies.

In a press release, the Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) announced “continued growth” in the global geothermal power sector, with “more countries developing projects, and an increase in on-line capacity of between 4% and 5% for the third year in a row.”

According to the GEA, there were 700 MW of new additions in 2014, pushing the global total upwards of 12.7 GW across 24 different countries. There are also 11.7 GW of capacity additions in development, and another 1.8 GW of power under construction in 80 countries.

Read More.......

Finance:

Insurance Products Can Help Grow Renewable Energy (Artemis.bm )

Report highlights how a new geothermal drilling risk insurance product for the Kenyan and Ethiopian markets can help develop the industry in East Africa.


The latest independent review from ClimateWise, which was prepared by PwC, highlights the important role that insurance, reinsurance and insurance-linked securities (ILS) can play in the financial fight against the perils of climate change.

Following the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) meeting in Lima, Peru of December this year, ClimateWise has released their 2014 report revealing what the organisation believes the insurance and reinsurance market could, and should be doing to help.

The study continues to praise the work of innovative products including the 1-in-100 initiatives, and the same praise is surely due to other ventures like the Indian national crop insurance scheme, the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) and the African Risk Capacity (ARC).

But, as ClimateWise acknowledges, perhaps more products like this are needed throughout the world; “There are further opportunities to innovate and develop new risk insurance products in emerging and developing markets for low carbon industries. One example is the development of a new geothermal drilling risk insurance product for the Kenyan and Ethiopian markets.”

Read More........

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Technology:

Can New Drill Tech Unleash the Potential of Geothermal Energy? (GigaOm)

The next generation of geothermal energy technology — called enhanced or engineered geothermal, or EGS for short — has long been just out of reach in a commercial sense. Why? Because it’s just been too expensive mostly due to the high cost of drilling new enhanced geothermal wells deep down into hard hot rocks over 10,000 feet below the earth’s surface.

But according to next-gen geothermal startup AltaRock, a new type of drilling technology could help solve this problem of high cost drilling. AltaRock CEO Aaron Mandell tells me that the company has entered into a partnership, and created a joint venture, with a company called ON Energy, which is the U.S. supplier of Korean drilling company Hanjin D&B. AltaRock and ON Energy plan to use a new type of “hammer” drilling tech that could help commercialize enhanced geothermal energy.


Read More........

Kenya:

Geothermal is #1 Energy Source in Kenya (investorintel.com)

Kenya’s geothermal power generation touched a fresh high in October, topping the country’s power mix and signalling relief for electricity consumers.

Data show geothermal generated was 339.4 million units (kilowatt-hours), a record in Kenya’s history.

This equaled 43.8 per cent of the energy mix in the month, ahead of hydro at 36 per cent (279.02 million KWh) and thermal at 20.2 per cent (156.66 million units).

Read More......

United Kingdom:

North East England at the Forefront of Multi-Million Pound Geothermal Energy Plans (The Journal)

Despite a recent setback, scientists say the North East has the potential to become the site of the UK’s first geothermal energy scheme in decades


Location of the Shiremoor Project
(Courtesy Cluff Geothermal)
Now North Tyneside, Weardale and Bishop Auckland are at the forefront of multi-million pound plans to deliver emission-free heat to thousands of North East properties.

Despite the recent announcement that the Newcastle Science Central borehole had failed to find sufficient water to support a geothermal network, scientists say the potential for the rest of the North East is excellent.

London-based Cluff Geothermal, headed by George Percy, son of the Duke of Northumberland, has identified a site close to the A19, near Shiremoor, to drill a geothermal borehole.

The aim is to tap into water – at a temperature of 70°C - at a depth of two kilometers which will then be brought to the surface to deliver heat to homes and businesses.

Europe:

Legend: Geothermal Energy in the Balkans (Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso)

Thanks to the project LEGEND (Low Enthalpy Geothermal Energy Demonstration cases for Energy Efficient building in Adriatic area), sponsored by the Province of Ferrara with the support of the European Geothermal Energy Council, awareness of the importance of geothermal energy has started to spread in some Balkan countries.

The areas of Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Slovenia, Serbia, and Albania have optimal geological and climatic characteristics for geothermal exploitation, given the presence of an average-temperature sedimentary basin throughout the western Adriatic coast.


Read More.......

Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia:

New Transmission Project for East Africa

Interconnector will help deliver renewable energy in the East African Rift Valley


Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia have signed a power interconnector memorandum of understanding (MOU) project.

The inter-governmental agreement signed on 15 December in order to stimulate investment in power generation is worth 1.2 billion US dollars. The agreement sets out principles that underline the relationship amongst the three governments.

The power connector project will link the East African Power Pool (EAPP) to the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) and promote electricity trade, boost trade and security of electricity supply. Implementation of the project will also foster regional integration in the three states by consolidating work relations through supply mechanism.

Read More.......

Canada:

Site C Dam Approved by B.C. Government (CBC)

Hydropower project chosen over geothermal and other renewable energy alternatives


The British Columbia government has approved the $9 billion Site C dam — a massive hydroelectric project that would flood a large area of the Peace River Valley in northeastern B.C.

In making the announcement, Premier Christy Clark said the Site C Clean Energy Project will provide B.C. residents with a reliable source of power for the next 100 years for the least cost to the taxpayer.

“Affordable, reliable, clean electricity is the backbone of British Columbia’s economy,” said Clark. “Site C will support our quality of life for decades to come and will enable continued investment and a growing economy.”

Read More.......

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

St. Lucia:

St. Lucia Receives $2.8 Million for Geothermal Project (Fox News Latino)

The St. Lucia government announced on Tuesday that its Geothermal Resource Development Project has received $2.8 million in grants from the World Bank and the New Zealand government.

In a statement, the Ministry of Sustainable Development, Energy, Science and Technology said it hosted last week a delegation of technical experts from the World Bank, the U.K. Department for International Development and the New Zealand government to discuss the project.

"The Geothermal Resource Development Project in Soufriere is a key pillar of Saint Lucia's Sustainable Energy program, as it has the potential to provide a steady base-load of electricity; stabilize energy prices way into the future; attract investment as a result," the government stated.

According to a 2008 study by the Trinidad branch of the University of the West Indies, St. Lucia's estimated geothermal potential is 680 MW.

Read More......

United Kingdom:

New Renewable Energy Company will Explore for Geothermal in Southern England (OilVoice)

The Board of InfraStrata plc has announced that it has signed a binding Heads of Agreement for an Asset Exchange with Fyrd Energy Limited (Fyrd) to further renewable energy projects including a possible geothermal energy source in Dorset.

A new project company, Integrated GeoRenewables (Dorset) Limited (IGR), will seek to evaluate the potential to develop an integrated geo-renewable energy project with a hub in the Portland area of Dorset. IGR believes there is the potential to use the unique deep geology of the area to improve the efficiency of renewable generation, using such technologies as geothermal energy or compressed air storage. The existing sub-surface geological and engineering work (including deep drilling and seismic data), surface facilities engineering and environmental work undertaken by InfraStrata for its former planned gas storage project at Portland will have a significant value for IGR.

Read More......

USA, Oregon:

AltaRock Energy and ON Energy Form Geothermal Partnership to Advance Clean Power (Digital Journal)

Altarock will use “water hammer” drilling machine to speed up drilling at Newberry Volcano EGS project


AltaRock Energy and ON Energy announced today a partnership to further the commercialization of enhanced geothermal energy as a new source of electric power. The companies have entered into a partnership that will provide advanced tools for geothermal developers, through a joint venture.

According to the agreement, AltaRock’s Stimulation Services LLC business unit will contribute stimulation technology and ON Energy, the exclusive U.S. drilling services partner of South Korean company Hanjin D&B, will provide deep drilling services. By combining technical resources, the companies aim to take a leadership position in the commercialization of products for deep geothermal reservoirs.

This agreement is established on the heels of a successful demonstration in the city of Gwangju, South Korea. Utilizing a novel “water hammer” drilling machine, Hanjin D&B, the Korean manufacturing partner for ON Energy, achieved a depth of over 12,000 feet, at up to ten times the drilling speed of conventional drilling and as much as 50% lower cost. The water hammer is tailored for hard rock and can handle a wide variety of geologic conditions.

AltaRock and ON Energy have planned to collaborate on an integrated demonstration in 2015 at the Newberry Volcano EGS project in Deschutes County, Oregon.

Read More.......

USA, Idaho:

U.S. Geothermal Completes Acquisition of Earth Power Resources (SYS-CON Media - News Release)

GRC Member Company U.S. Geothermal Inc. announced today that it successfully completed the previously announced acquisition of Earth Power Resources (EPR) on December 12, 2014. Under the terms of the Agreement, EPR was merged with and into U.S. Geothermal.

The assets acquired from EPR include geothermal leases covering 26,017 acres in Nevada, representing three projects that have an energy potential estimated in the range of 158 to 359 megawatts. Also included is EPR's complete geothermal resource database of new project opportunities located throughout the western United States, which EPR had compiled over its nearly 40 years of geothermal exploration experience.

"We are very pleased to have added the Earth Power project portfolio to our development pipeline and look forward to advancing the development of these excellent opportunities," said Dennis Gilles, Chief Executive Officer of U.S. Geothermal Inc. and GRC Board Member "We are also pleased to continue our growth through a combination of the development of internal projects and growth through strategic acquisition - this acquisition continues the execution of that plan."

Read More.......

USA, California:

Petaluma Signs on with Sonoma Clean Power (Petaluma Argus Courier)

City will get geothermal electricity from The Geysers


The Petaluma City Council on Monday voted unanimously to join Sonoma Clean Power, becoming the last Sonoma County city to take part in the startup public electricity agency.

The 33,400 Petaluma electric customers will be enrolled in the program next summer, at the same time as Rohnert Park and Cloverdale. The three cities sat out the initial launch of Sonoma Clean Power, which began serving customers in May.

Sonoma Clean Power offers electricity that is 33 percent renewable, mostly from geothermal from The Geysers and solar plants, compared with PG&E’s 22 percent. Customers are saving 4 to 5 percent on electric bills with Sonoma Clean Power, and a PG&E rate increase next year will make Sonoma Clean Power’s rates more favorable.

Read More.......

Kenya:

KenGen Rights Issue Due Early 2015 (Capital FM Kenya)

New funds will finance Olkaria IV, Olkaria VI, Olkaria VII, up to VIII and even Olkaria I, unit six geothermal projects


The Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) plans to kick off it Rights Issue in the first quarter of next year.

According to Energy and Petroleum Permanent Secretary Joseph Njoroge, the negotiations between KenGen and the government – which is the majority shareholder – “are in the last stages and the outcome will be known soon.”

KenGen targets to raise a total of Sh30 billion, with Sh15 billion coming from the rights issue while the rest through government means, yet to be decided.

The Rights Issue is expected to finance new projects comprising mainly a mix of geothermal and wind energy, to boost KenGen’s power generation capacity in the next three years.

“We have now commissioned 280 MW at Olkaria. Our next project is Olkaria IV, Olkaria VI, Olkaria VII, up to VIII and even Olkaria I, unit six which has 70 MW,” KenGen Managing Director Albert Mugo explained.

Read More......

Monday, December 15, 2014

New Zealand:

Mighty River Power to Exit Geothermal Investments in Chile & Germany (News Release)

Mighty River Power today announced that the company will exit its geothermal development interests in Chile and Germany, while keeping its stake in operating US interests.

The company announced earlier this year that it was undertaking a review of international geothermal investments as part of a broader strategic planning process.

Chief Executive, Fraser Whineray, said the international geothermal development options in all three countries have positive characteristics, but were now not in line with the company’s investment objectives.

“We will be commencing a sale process for the assets in Chile and Germany. In the US, where we have an interest in a 50 MW operating plant and a minority stake in a geothermal development company, no further development capital will be committed.”

Read More.......

Europe:

The European Geothermal Innovation Award (EGEC)

The European Geothermal Innovation Award is given to companies which have made an outstanding contribution towards the field of geothermal energy in the form of innovative products, scientific research or project initiatives.

The winner will be announced at GeoTHERM Offenburg in March, 2015.

The European Geothermal Innovation Award is given to companies which have made an outstanding contribution towards the field of geothermal energy in the form of innovative products, scientific research or project initiatives.

A jury of five assesses submissions on grounds of originality, innovation, reliability, reduction of emissions and improvements in energy output.

At the end of January, a five shortlisted candidates will be announced as endorsed nominations, with the overall winner announced during the award ceremony at GeoTHERM.

USA, California:

MS Student Opportunities - Geothermal Research in Southern California (AGU Careers)

Two M.S. research assistant-ships (with tuition) are available for theoretical and field based studies in geothermal reservoir permeability.

Assistant-ships are for two years and support progress toward the M.S. Degree in Geology with the California State University Long Beach Department of Geology. Please contact Prof. Matthew Becker (matt.becker@csulb.edu) with unofficial transcripts and GRE scores and see our website for more information.

Climate Change:

UN Members Agree Deal at Lima Climate Talks (BBC News)

United Nations members have reached an agreement on how countries should tackle climate change.

Delegates have approved a framework for setting national pledges to be submitted to a summit next year.

Differences over the draft text caused the two-week talks in Lima, Peru, to overrun by two days. Environmental groups said the deal was an ineffectual compromise, but the EU said it was a step towards achieving a global climate deal next year in Paris.

The talks proved difficult because of divisions between rich and poor countries over how to spread the burden of pledges to cut carbon emissions.

The agreement was adopted hours after a previous draft was rejected by developing countries, who accused rich nations of shirking their responsibilities to fight global warming and pay for its impacts.

Read More.......

New Zealand:

Deep Fault Drilling Project Looks for Geothermal Resources on South Island (Phys.Org)

Extending some 600-km from Milford Sound to Marlborough, the study of the Alpine Fault is New Zealand's flagship contribution to the world of geophysics. And now a sizeable portion of that community, drawn from 12 different nations have gathered in south Westland under the leadership of a team of New Zealanders from GNS Science, Victoria University and Otago University.

Their audacious mission is three-fold. First, they must drill down to – and hopefully through - the Alpine Fault which is estimated to lie at around 1 km depth beneath the Whataroa Valley. As the drilling proceeds, the team are monitoring a wide range of physical and chemical properties of the rock, gases and fluids encountered along the way. This is critical for maintaining the drilling momentum because constant adjustments need to be made as different conditions are met. These measurements are also revealing potential resources including geothermal waters that may be hot enough to become a viable energy source.

Read More...........

Canada:

Direct-Use Geothermal Exploration Coming to BC (The Rocky Mountain Goat)

Over this coming winter, Geoscience BC will be gathering existing geothermal data on Valemount and other areas of the province. The aim is to help identify sites with economically feasible potential for geothermal direct-use applications, and potentially start a consortium to drill test holes to verify that potential.

Carlos Salas, professional geoscientist and Vice President of Oil and Gas for Geoscience BC, says the non-profit organization has been around for about 10 years. Its goal is to providing science to British Columbians so they can make informed decisions about resource development in the province. About three years ago, the board of directors thought they should start looking at geothermal energy.

Technolgy:

New Technology Could Tap into Waste Geothermal Heat (St. George Daily Spectrum)

A small operation that could be about to go big is perched above downtown St. George at a makeshift test site off Red Hills Parkway.

Helidyne, an energy company that started six years ago when two brothers started tinkering in a garage with a little-known technology, is in the process of testing its patented power generators in preparation for its first major sale — four units headed to offshore oil platforms for Mexico’s state-owned Pemex, where they could replace diesel units that require expensive shipments of fossil fuels.

The company’s patented “planetary rotor expander” sounds like something out of Star Trek, but the idea is a fundamentally simple one. The generator, built into a box about the size of an economy car, takes in high-pressure gas and funnels it through a system of specially-designed rotors to generate electricity. The gas is then sent back out at a lower pressure, meaning the generators can be installed via a simple bypass loop and feed the gas back into the supply line.

The technology could eventually be used in an assortment of applications, utilizing hot water from geothermal power plants, hydraulic pressure from oil wells or natural gas along supply lines in places like Southern Utah. Every place where pressure along those lines is reduced, there is wasted energy that could be harnessed, Kevin Kerlin said.

Read More.......

Philippines:

Geothermal Energy Auctions Pushed Back to January (eco-business.com)

The Philippines government will postpone the open and competitive selection process (OCSP) for the 24 renewable energy resource areas that will be offered to local and international investors, an official from the Philippines Energy department said yesterday.

Mario C. Marasigan, director of the agency’s Renewable Energy Management Bureau, said the start of the auction process will be moved to January from today.

Last month, Mr. Marasigan said the Energy department will offer four geothermal and 10 hydropower sites for development and utilization.

Marasigan said that two of the sites are in Mindanao – one of which is the 40 MW Amakan geothermal field in Compostela Valley; and the other one is a smaller 20 MW prospect in Balut Island, Davao Occidental.

The third site is Cabalian in Southern Leyte; and the fourth is the Acupan-Itogon geothermal site in Benguet in Northern Luzon.

Read More.......

Costa Rica:

President Solis Opposes Geothermal in National Parks (Inside Costa Rica)

President Luis Guillermo Solis of Costa Rica
President Luis Guillermo Solis will not support geothermal energy generation in Costa Rica’s national parks during his time in office, calling such a measure unnecessary, the president announced last week during the latest roundtable discussions aimed at tackling high energy prices in the country.

Despite the president’s opposition, there are currently three bills making their way through the Legislative Assembly that aim to significantly expand geothermal energy production in the country, including inside national parks.

Read More........

Europe:

Geothermal Journalist Awarded EGU Science Journalism Fellowship (News Release)

Karl Urban will use prize money to report on the Iceland Deep Drilling Project


Karl Urban, winner of a 2015 Science Journalism Fellowship
The European Geosciences Union (EGU) has named journalist Karl Urban as one of the winners of its 2015 Science Journalism Fellowship. He will be awarded €2,500 for his journalism project reporting on obtaining a new kind of geothermal energy.

Urban will report on efforts to access a different type of energy resource, obtained near active volcanoes. In 2008, when the Iceland Deep Drilling Project team drilled their first borehole to tap into geothermal energy at depths of more than 4,000 meters, they inadvertently drilled into a magma reservoir at 2,100 meters. Despite that, the project was considered a success as the scientists and engineers were able to supply heat directly from the molten magma for a few months. As they plan to drill another hole in south-western Iceland, Urban will follow them to report on the difficulties and consequences of tapping into magma energy.

Urban is a science journalist in Germany specializing in geoscience and space science reporting. He works for radio stations, online magazines and newspapers, including Deutschlandfunk, Spektrum.de and Neue Zürcher Zeitung.

Read More.......

Philippines:

MGI Gearing Up to Expand Batangas Geothermal Plant (BusinessWorld Online Edition)

Maibarara Geothermal, Inc. (MGI) wants to expand its 20 MW power plant in Batangas, an official from the Energy department said yesterday.

“MGI is looking at initially 10 MW. Everything is being put in place,” Mario C. Marasigan, director of the agency’s Renewable Energy Management Bureau, told reporters in a text message.

Mr. Marasigan said MGI has begun an onsite resource assessment in preparation for an expansion.

“They are looking whether they will use the existing well or drill a new one,” he said.

The official said it will take another two years before the planned expansion goes into commercial operation.

Read More........

Technology:

Atlas Copco Organic Rankine Cycle Power Plants



The Atlas Copco Gas and Process Division provides a full range of Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) solutions for geothermal and waste heat to power applications. Our radial in-flow turbines, or turboexpanders, form the basis of Organic Rankine Cycle solutions. Employing highly efficient integral gear technology and Variable Inlet Guide Vanes (IGVs), the turboexpanders deliver continuous, reliable power production. We provide customer-specific, clean energy solutions around the globe. One of our flagship projects (as shown in this video) is a geothermal power plant in Pamukören, Turkey, which has an electrical capacity of 45 MW and can meet the energy needs of at least 40,000 people.

USA, Oregon:

The Dream Becomes Real: Touring the Newberry Enhanced Geothermal Site (Renewable Energy World)

Tucked away in remote Oregon, the AltaRock Newberry EGS project has been shrouded in rumors and secrecy, but a recent tour of the facility revealed that the technology is very much real and making great strides.


The injection well at the AltaRock Newberry EGS site.
On a crisp fall day in late-September, three white vans crept up a winding Oregon dirt road lined with thick forestry. The pitted, unwelcoming path made for a rough ride — a likely indicator that many don’t often brave the ride to the top of the crater.

Finally, the famed enhanced geothermal system (EGS) research project that has been shrouded in mystery and rumor would be revealed to the 20 geologists, engineers and students attending the 2014 Geothermal Resources Council Annual Meeting and Geothermal Energy Association Expo in Portland, Oregon.

Read More......

Global:

2015 GRC Annual Meeting Call For Papers

Deadline: April 10, 2015


The Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) invites you to present your latest technical work in geothermal research, exploration, development and utilization at the GRC's 39th Annual Meeting, September 20 - 23, 2015 at the Peppermill Resort in Reno, Nevada. Our theme this year is "Geothermal: Always On."

Anyone who wants to present at the GRC Annual Meeting must first submit a completed draft paper. Successful selection to present at the GRC 2015 Annual Meeting is prestigious and recognizes the presenter as a top industry expert. International participation is key to the success of the GRC Annual Meeting technical programs and we encourage geothermal researchers and experts from around the world to submit their work for consideration.

Draft Paper submission deadline is April 10, 2015

Friday, December 12, 2014

Global:

Become a Member of the Geothermal Resources Council - the Global Geothermal Community

With the experience and dedication of its diverse, international membership and a more than 40-year plus track record, the Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) has built a solid reputation as one of the world’s premier geothermal associations. The GRC serves as a focal point for continuing professional development for its members through its outreach, information transfer and education services.

To join or renew download: GRC Membership Application (PDF)

Current GRC Members can update profile information, renew membership or search the Membership Database by using your Member ID and Password.

Saint Lucia:

Accelerating Saint Lucia`s Geothermal Resource Development Project (Caribbean News Service)

Sylvester Clauzel, Permanent Secretary (left) receives the grant documents 
The Ministry of Sustainable Development, Energy, Science and Technology this week hosted a delegation of technical experts from the World Bank, the United Kingdom (UK) Department for International Development (DFID) and the New Zealand Government who were here to advance the Saint Lucia Geothermal Resource Development Project.

On Wednesday, the teams from the World Bank and the New Zealand Government made presentations to Permanent Secretaries and senior government officials from a number of key Ministries who will be integrally involved in facilitating the geothermal development.

So far, a combined total of US$2.8 million in financial and technical assistance grants have been invested into the geothermal project by the the World Bank and the New Zealand Government, with supplementary funding of US$1 million from Saint Lucia`s Global Environment Facility (GEF) allocation`s fifth disbursement .

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Sustainable Development, Energy, Science and Technology received the signed contracts for the GEF and Small Island Developing States Renewable Energy project (SIDS DOCK) grants on Wednesday and these will be forwarded to the Prime Minster for his signature.

Read More.......

Global:

GRC Sends 6,000 Tweets!

The Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) has posted more than 6,000 Tweets, short 140-character messages, on the GRC Twitter page.

As the premier information and education association in the global geothermal energy community, the GRC is serious about keeping its followers up-to-date with the latest geothermal energy news.

The Twitter service has been running since June 2011 which works out as more than 140 Tweets a month!

Get the latest Geothermal Energy news on your mobile device: https://twitter.com/GRC2001



Canada:

Geothermal 101 Workshop (CanGEA)

18 December, 2014, 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM

The Calgary Petroleum Club, The Trophy Lounge, Calgary

Geothermal energy is delivering clean, base-load and low cost electricity in 25 countries as well as commercial heating in 70 countries. While not yet fully utilized, geothermal energy is an important part of Canada’s energy future, creating new investment and jobs in Canadian communities while also contributing to a cleaner environment for future generations.

Speaker Craig Dunn of Borealis GeoPower
Not familiar with the environmental, social and economic benefits of geothermal power, or would like to learn more?

Join Chief Geologist of Borealis GeoPower, Craig Dunn, to explore the Canadian energy industry’s efforts to develop geothermal energy.

Cost: $150. Lunch included.  

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Indonesia:

Sumitomo to Build Geothermal Power Plant in North Sulawesi (Nikkei Asian Review)


Sumitomo Corp. has won an order to construct Units 5 and 6 at the Lahendong geothermal steam field in Indonesia, with completion targeted for 2017.

Awarded by a geothermal subsidiary of state-owned oil company Pertamina, the project in North Sulawesi is worth roughly 10 billion yen ($84.2 million), and will be jointly undertaken with major Indonesian engineering firm Rekayasa Industri. Two 20 MW electricity generation units will be installed, with Fuji Electric providing both steam turbines and power generators.

Sumitomo has so far undertaken 10 geothermal construction projects in Indonesia. With the latest order included, Sumitomo-built power stations together will generate 820 MW, more than half the country's geothermal electricity output.

Read More.......

Latin America:

Every Watt Matters: Geothermal and COP20 (BID)

Hans Schulz, Acting Vice President for Private Sector and Sovereign Guaranteed Operations at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)

Latin America and the Caribbean leads the world in renewable energy. Hydropower makes up 60% of the generation matrix.  Still, there is vast untapped potential for low-carbon energy development. During my current trip to the COP20 in Lima, Peru, I had a chance to focus on the long-established source of renewable energy that has yet to reach its full potential: geothermal in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The Geothermal Development Facility launched this week at COP20 in Lima is designed to lower similar barriers to entry. The facility addresses risk-taking, capacity building and mobilization of private capital. It utilizes international collaboration and cross-sector collaboration between private and public players.

Doing nothing is no longer an option. Power generation in the region cannot keep pace with growing demand. An emerging middle class and record-level urbanization continue to make the current energy matrix unsustainable. Renewable energy sources like geothermal, coupled with energy efficiency measures, is a must.

The stakes are high. With the right financial instruments and risk-mitigation strategies, geothermal offers great promise. To effectively curb the trend of climate change, we must explore every avenue in geothermal development. Every watt matters. Hopefully we can all return from Lima with a similar sentiment of urgency and commitment and take swift action.

Read More......

Israel:

Ormat Technologies Will Also be Listed in Tel Aviv (Globes)

In addition to the TASE, Ormat will also be registered on a third stock exchange, and the company board is currently weighing possibilities in European and Far Eastern stock exchanges. 


Ormat Technologies Inc. is expected to register for trading on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE), following the completion of its merger with Ormat Industries Ltd.

Ormat controlling shareholders FIMI Opportunity Funds  and the Bronicki family are going ahead with a merger between Ormat Industries, already listed on the TASE, and Ormat Technologies. It was initially thought that the TASE was "losing" Ormat Industries, which will be delisted, but the company has now announced that its board of directors plans to register Ormat Technologies shares on the TASE. The company reportedly hopes that Ormat will enter the Tel Aviv 25 Index.

Read More........

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Latin America:

Geothermal Development Facility (GDF) for Latin America (IISD Reporting Services)

On Monday, December 8, 2014, the Geothermal Development Facility (GDF) for Latin America was launched during an event at UNFCCC COP 20. This video by IISD Reporting Services highlights key components of the facility including the Mitigation Risk Fund and the Technical Assistance Forum. GDF stakeholders highlight the type of support they are providing via the Facility.



Geothermal Development Facility (GDF) for Latin America from IISD Reporting Services on Vimeo.

USA, California:

California Energy Commission Confirms Calpine Grant to Study Flexibility Enhancements at The Geysers

The California Energy Commission (CEC) today agreed to a resolution approving Agreement EPC-14-002 with Geysers Power Company LLC (The Geysers) for a $3,000,000 grant to investigate the methods, risks and costs associated with flexibly operating the Geysers geothermal plants to facilitate the integration of other intermittent renewable resources onto the grid in support of California's energy and greenhouse gas reduction goals.

Calpine will match the grant award, which will fund a study to investigate how generation at The Geysers may be modified to enhance flexibility and address the greater demands imposed on the grid by intermittent renewables.