Tuesday, May 23, 2017

USA: President's Budget Request Slashes Geothermal Technologies Spending

U.S. Department of Energy FY 2018 Budget Justification

The Budget provides $12.5 Million in FY 2018 for Geothermal Technologies, $58.5 Million below the FY 2016 Enacted level

The President’s Budget for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 requests $28.0 billion for the Department of Energy (DOE) to make key investments in science and technology innovation that support its missions in nuclear security, basic scientific research, energy innovation and security, and environmental cleanup.

The FY 2018 Request provides $2.2 billion, $2.4 billion below the FY 2016 Enacted level, for energy programs that enhance U.S. security and economic growth through transformative science, technology innovation, and market solutions to meet the Nation’s energy challenges.

$636 million is targeted for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, $1.4 billion below the FY 2016 Enacted level, focusing on early stage R&D to support American energy independence and domestic job-growth.

The Budget provides $12.5 Million in FY 2018 for Geothermal Technologies, $58.5 Million below the FY 2016 Enacted level, supporting GTO’s Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) collaborative effort, bringing together National Laboratory-led teams, academia, and industry to conduct early-stage R&D that explores the fundamental relationships between seismicity, stress state, and permeability to validate and verify models, providing feedback to inform the next stage of EGS research.

DOE FY 2018 Budget Justification.......
DOE FY 2018 Budget Fact Sheet (PDF)........
Summary Table by Organization (PDF)........

Mexico: ENGIE and Reykjavik Geothermal to Jointly Develop Geothermal Projects

Mexican Ministry of Energy awards three geothermal exploration permits (News Release)

Mexico's Ministry of Energy (SENER) has issued three exploration permits to ENGIE, a global energy company, and Reykjavik Geothermal, an Icelandic geothermal development company.

These permits authorise their holders to spend three years exploring geothermal resources located in three zones, each measuring 150 km2, in Sangangüey (in the state of Nayarit) and in Cerro Pinto and Las Derrumbadas (in the state of Puebla).

This major step forward in the development of geothermal energy in Mexico follows the signature of a cooperation agreement on December 7, 2015 between ENGIE, through its wholly owned subsidiary Storengy, and Reykjavik Geothermal, geared towards obtaining and jointly developing Mexico's concessions and geothermal exploration permits.

Read More.........

Monday, May 22, 2017

Science & Technology: Special Edition of European Geologist Magazine on Geothermal Energy

Geothermal – The Energy of the Future

Latest Edition of European Geologist – The journal of the European Federation of Geologists

Germany: New Master's Degree Program in GeoThermics/GeoEnergy

TUM launches new degree programs (News Release)

The Technical University of Munich (TUM) will offer eight new courses of study in the upcoming winter semester. The programs unite several subjects in the study of sustainable technologies and the relationship of technology and natural sciences to society. Among them is a new Master's degree program in GeoThermics / GeoEnergy.

Southern Bavaria offers especially favorable geological conditions for the use of geothermal energy. The objective of the GeoThermics / GeoEnergy program is to provide students with research-related education in preparation for the growing market in the field of geoenergies. It teaches comprehensive expertise ranging from locating geothermal energy sources to exploration methods all the way to use in energy technologies. The knowledge involved can also be applied in many other topic areas dealing with deeper subterranean geology. The joint degree program is offered by TUM and FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg as a part of the Geothermal Alliance Bavaria. Application deadline: July 15

Indonesia: Five Geothermal Working Areas With Potential Capacity of 330 MW on Offer Through Regular Tender

Indonesia energy ministry to offer 12 geothermal working areas this year (Rambu Energy)

The Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry (ESDM) plans to offer 12 geothermal working areas (WKP) to investors this year through regular tender and direct offer.

The ministry said five of the twelve working areas will be auctioned through regular tender, while seven of them will be offered directly to the state owned energy companies, namely PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN), PT Geo Dipa and PT Pertamina.

The five WKPs are WKP Muara Bulung in Southeast Sulawesi with potential capacity of 20 MW, Oka Iliange WKP in West Nusa Tenggara with potential capacity of 20 MW, Joilolo WKP in North Maluku with potential capacity of 60 MW, Simbolon Samosir WKP in North Sumatera with capacity of 220 MW and Sirung WKP located in Alor Island in East Nusa Tenggara with potential capacity of 10 MW.

The five working areas have total potential capacity of 330 MW. Director for Geothermal at the Directorate for New, Renewable and Energy Conservation Yunus Saefulhak said his office is still drafting regulation for the geothermal WK auction, which is expected to be issued in June this year.

France: New Geothermal District Heating Plant in Paris Suburbs

Nouvelle centrale de géothermie à Villejuif: un joyau de l’énergie verte - New geothermal power plant in Villejuif: a jewel of green energy (94 Citoyens)

De couleur cuivre et argent, ses cheminées qui s’élancent désormais depuis la rue Jean-Baptiste Baudin à Villejuif semblent rendre un hommage posthume au sculpteur roumain Constantin Brancusi. Opérationnelle depuis janvier et inaugurée le 15 mai prochain, la nouvelle centrale du réseau de géothermie de Chevilly-L’Haÿ-Villejuif, le plus grand d’Europe, constitue un modèle d’énergie renouvelable et économique. Visite en avant-première avec son directeur, Michel Andrès.

[Google translation] Copper and silver in color, the chimneys that now run from the Rue Jean-Baptiste Baudin to Villejuif seem to pay a posthumous homage to the Romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi. Operational since January and inaugurated on May 15, the new Chevilly-L'Haÿ-Villejuif geothermal power station, the largest in Europe, is a model of renewable and economical energy. Visit in preview with its director, Michel Andrès.

Plus........                               Read More.........

Switzerland: Swiss Voters Choose to Grow Renewables at Expense of Nuclear

Swiss vote in in favor of gradual nuclear phaseout (Deutsche Welle)

Swiss voters have gone to the polls in a referendum on the government's plan to move from nuclear power to renewables. Results suggest that a majority favors the plan, which critics claim is too expensive.

Although the plan does not lay down a clear timetable for phasing out the plants, it does envisage increasing reliance on hydraulic power and solar, wind, geothermal and biomass energy sources, as well as reducing energy consumption and improving energy efficiency.

Its targets are ambitious, with the aim being to cut the average energy consumption per person per year by 43 percent by 2035 as compared with levels in 2000.

Friday, May 19, 2017

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA GeoExpo+

Less than Five Months to the Geothermal Energy Event of the Year!

More information on the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA GeoExpo+.......

Europe: New Report Measures Slight Increase in Geothermal Energy Capacity

The State of Renewable Energies In Europe - Edition 2016 - 16th EurObserv’ER Report

According to EurObserv’ER, European Union-wide installed geothermal electricity capacity has risen slightly (by 4 MW) to 993.6 MW. Net capacity, the maximum capacity presumed to be exploitable, is put at 837.1  MW (2 MW more). Gross electricity output production increased in 2015 to 6,615  GWh, compared to 6  303  GWh in 2014.

EurObserv’ER notes that Germany is the only country to have increased its geothermal capacity when the Grünwald/Laufzorn geothermal plant came on stream (adding 4.3  MW). The country’s installed geothermal capacity rose to 31 MW at the end of 2015 (net capacity of 26 MW), according to AGEEstat.

Read More........

United Kingdom: Continuing Interest in Importing Electricity from Icelandic Geothermal Power Plants

Could British homes be powered by Icelandic volcano? (The Guardian)

Courtesy International Continental Scientific Drilling Program
Commercial interest is growing in plans to harness geothermal energy from Iceland’s magma lakes and use it to supply the UK and Europe

Harnessing the power of Iceland’s volcanoes to provide energy to British homes is one of those ideas that resurfaces every few years, but sounds too good – or whacky – to be true.

However, interest from a clutch of international companies in a geothermal project in northern Iceland suggests the idea is not just achievable but commercially viable too.

Scientists working on the Krafla Magma Testbed plan to drill more than 2km below the Earth’s crust into a molten magma lake, starting a process they say could see the UK receiving energy from Iceland’s volcanoes within 20 years.

Malaysia: First Geothermal Plant to Come on Stream by 2019 Will be Private Sector Project

Malaysia first geothermal plant is private sector project, no cost to govt (Astro Awani)

Malaysia's first geothermal plant which is set to come on stream by 2019 in Tawau is the private sector project, developed by Tawau Green Technology Sdn Bhd, according to Energy, Green Technology and Water (Kettha) Minister Datuk Seri Maximus Johnity Ongkili.

He said the project will keep zero-cost to the government and that the opposition should stop questioning the project and its cost.

The developer has already signed the Power Purchase Agreement with Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB). The power plant at Apas Kiri, which is the first renewable and sustainable project of its kind in Malaysia will supply 30 MW to the SESB grid.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Iceland: Vacancy as Post-Doc Researcher in Data Fusion for Geothermal Reservoirs

Postdoctoral Researcher in Data Fusion for Geothermal Reservoir Characterization (Storf.is)

The position is for two years and the successful applicant will be based at Reykjavík University in Iceland. The application deadline is June 15, 2017.

The group for Operations Research and Subsurface Modelling (ORSM) is looking for a post-doctoral researcher to join the project Data Fusion for Geothermal Reservoirs.

The purpose of this project is to improve the accuracy of reservoir models by developing methods to constrain these models to data from different geophysical and geological surveys, and field production data.

Inversion algorithms and Bayesian inference techniques such as Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) will be used to construct an ensemble of geologically plausible models, that are consistent with available data for hydrothermal systems.

More Information........

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA GeoExpo+ - Geothermal Workshops Announced

Workshops Announced for Geothermal Resources Council Annual Meeting (News Release)

Two workshops before the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA GeoExpo+ in Salt Lake City, Utah. 

The Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) has announced more details of events at the biggest geothermal energy conference of the year at the Salt Palace Convention Center, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.

In addition to the main event of the GRC Annual Meeting & Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) GeoExpo+ taking place October 1-4, 2017, there will be two workshops before the conference.

The Geothermal Resource Decision Workshop will be held on Friday & Saturday, September 29 & 30 and will focus on building realistic geothermal resource conceptual models to support decision risk assessments of well targeting and resource capacity. 

The Operations & Maintenance workshop will be held on Saturday, September 30 and will give attendees a forum to share lessons learned within the industry that can help improve the bottom line of every operating plant, and potentially make new plants more competitive with natural gas, wind and solar alternatives.

USA: Baseload Renewables Urge DOE to Level the Playing Field

Grid review splits renewable energy providers (National Wind Watch)

Several renewable energy groups are urging Energy Secretary Rick Perry to use a contested grid study to consider how their industries are not receiving the same benefits as wind, natural gas and other technologies.

Critics see DOE’s review of grid reliability and subsidies as a potential threat to the federal wind tax credit, especially since study leader Travis Fisher has questioned its value and the broader benefit of renewable energy mandates (Global Geothermal News, April 17).

But the groups behind the letter – which represent renewable industries providing baseload power – are targeting the DOE study as a way to address what they say are unfair policies at the state and federal level.

The National Hydropower Association, the American Biogas Council, the Geothermal Energy Association, the Energy Recovery Council and the Biomass Power Association said they were “very encouraged” by DOE’s action to assess the grid.

Read More........

New Zealand: Discovery "a wonderful scientific finding that could be commercially very significant for New Zealand"

Alpine Fault drilling: 'What we encountered was really quite extreme' (Radio New Zealand)

Download MP3 file (18:24 Minutes)......

Researchers working on the Westland Deep Fault Drilling Project have drilled nearly 900 metres down into the alpine fault at Whataroa in Westland, looking at how the fault looks and sounds before an earthquake.

(Video - 4:40 Minutes)

The research, lead by GNS ScienceVictoria University of Wellington and the University of Otago, was published today in the international journal Nature.

Victoria University researcher John Townend, one of the lead scientists on the project, told Nine to Noon 40°C temperatures would be normal at 800 metres below the surface, but the team recorded temperatures three times that - about 120°C.

Similar geothermal temperatures were normally found at depths greater than three kilometres.

Read More.........

Philippines: MakBan Geothermal Power Plant to Supply Electricity to Nestlé

Nestlé taps AboitizPower to supply renewable energy to Batangas plant (Business Mirror)

Nestlé Philippines Inc. has tapped Aboitiz Power Corp. to supply renewable energy (RE) to its manufacturing facility in Lipa, Batangas.

“The partnership between AboitizPower and Nestlé Philippines is a testament to the shared commitment of both companies to continually look for better and sustainable solutions to reduce their carbon footprint and protect the environment in a more sustainable manner,” Nestlé Philippines Technical Director Peter Winter said.

The partnership was formally sealed on May 3.

Under the partnership, Aboitiz will source RE from the MakBan Geothermal Power Plant of AboitizPower subsidiary, AP Renewables Inc. (APRI).

USA: News from the Heat Pump Industry

Heat Exchange Industry News (Geothermal Exchange Organization)

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

Headlines and features in this month’s edition include:
  • President's Message - Never Give In!
  • GEO Video Highlights Tax Credits and Jobs
  • U.S. Rep. Hollingsworth Visits Geo-Flo
  • U.S. Rep. Russell Impressed with Gulfport Geo
  • U.S. Rep. Upton Visits Big Geo Job in Michigan
  • Yale Announces Renewable Thermal Alliance
The Geothermal Exchange Organization, is 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.

GEO Industry News (PDF)

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

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USA, California: New Community Choice Aggregation Will Be Biggest in Golden State

San Jose City Council approves new community choice energy plan, the largest in California (The Mercury News)

San Jose on Tuesday became the largest California city to launch “community choice energy” — an alternative electricity provider that environmentalists say will save money and reduce pollution linked to climate change.

The City Council unanimously approved the new utility program, San José Clean Energy (SJCE), at Tuesday’s council meeting. The “CCE” program would begin next spring and would be among eight statewide that offer residents an alternative to traditional utilities like Pacific Gas & Electric.

Read More........

Community Choice Aggregation in California - An Opportunity for the Geothermal Industry [July/August 2016 Bulletin] by Paul Brophy, Past-President, Geothermal Resources Council, and Vice-Chair, Business Operations Committee, Sonoma Clean Power.

Global: Geothermal Not on Track to Meet 2025 Target - IEA

Tracking Progress: Renewable power (IEA)

Renewable power capacity additions continued to reach new record highs in 2016, driven by cost reductions and policies aimed at enhancing energy security and sustainability and improving air quality. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA) Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report 2016, onshore wind and solar PV are expected to drive the majority of renewable capacity growth over the next five years. They are also the only two technologies on track to reach 2DS targets. 

Other renewable technologies are not on track to reach their 2DS targets. For geothermal, pre-development risks remain high overall, and drilling costs have been increasing over the last decade. 

Some policies could also address technology-specific challenges. These policies could include improved policies tackling pre development risks for geothermal energy.

Europe: More than 100 Geothermal Power Plants with Installed Capacity of About 2.5 GWe - Report

European geothermal energy needs regulatory certainty to sustain its steady growth (News Release)

EGEC, the European Geothermal Energy Council, has published the sixth edition of its annual study evaluating the development of the geothermal sector in Europe. In conjunction with the release of the report, EGEC has also unveiled its new logo and website.

The report shows that over the last five years (2012-2016), the use of geothermal energy, particularly for heat, has slowly but steadily increased across Europe.

In Europe, there exist more than 100 geothermal power plants, with an installed capacity that amounted to around 2.5 GWe in 2016 (of which 1 GWe is in the EU), producing some 15 TWh of electrical power every year. It is believed that the installed capacity on the continent will grow to around 3 GWe in 2020, with this major increase linked to the rapid growth of the Turkish market.

New Zealand: Promising Geothermal Resource Discovered on South Island

The sleeping dragon: Researchers find blazing heat beneath the Southern Alps (Stuff)

Extreme hydrothermal conditions at an active plate-bounding fault, Rupert Sutherland et alNature (2017) doi:10.1038/nature22355

Researchers have found some of the most extreme underground conditions anywhere on Earth beneath the Southern Alps, including temperatures similar to that of an active volcanic zone.

The surprise discovery could have economic implications for the area, and may give clues as to the conditions of a major fault prior to a significant rupture.

An international research team has discovered "extreme" geothermal conditions deep beneath the mountains, according to research published in the Nature journal on Thursday.

Temperatures measured near the surface were similar to those found in active volcanic zones such as Taupo – yet there are no volcanoes in Westland.

The research team – led by GNS Science, Victoria University of Wellington and the University of Otago, comprising more than 100 people from 12 countries – drilled a borehole nearly 900 metres deep at a site near Whataroa in Westland.

At 630m deep, they measured water temperatures of 100 degrees Celsius, hot enough to boil. They expected temperatures of less than 40C.

Drilling further, they determined the borehole's geothermal gradient – how quickly temperature rises as you go deep into the earth – was unlike any known active fault in the world.

Canada: Good Graphic of Proposed DEEP Geothermal Power Plant

SaskPower looking into potential geothermal power project (Regina Leader-Post)

DEEP Earth Energy Production Corp.'s prototype design for what the company is looking to build as a geothermal power plant at Estevan. The turbine technology the company plans to use is called organic rankine cycle and the plant would be similar in size to a farm Quonset. PHOTO PROVIDED BY DEEP EARTH ENERGY PRODUCTION CORP
Read More........

Switzerland: New Energy Law Would Grow Renewables at Expense of Nuclear

Swiss energy law aims to boost renewables, ban new nuclear plants (Reuters)

Switzerland votes on Sunday on a new energy law, titled "Energy Strategy 2050," that includes billions of Swiss francs in subsidies to support new renewable supplies and energy efficiency, while banning new nuclear power plants.

Highlights of the law are below:
  • Aims to increase solar, wind, biomass and geothermal energy output from 2,831 gigawatt hours (GWh) now, or just 4.3 percent of Swiss generation, to 11,400 GWh by 2035.
  • Bans new nuclear power plants ahead of the eventual phase out of Switzerland's five plants, with the first closing in 2019.
  • Hikes charges on electricity users to raise 480 million Swiss francs a year to subsidise energy production from solar, wind, biomass, geothermal and water power.
  • Elevates renewables to "national interest" status, helping them overcome legal challenges over a project's environmental or aesthetic impact.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Finland: Companies to Collaborate on Deep Geothermal Energy Development

Rototec Oy and Robit Oyj Deepen Their Co-Operation (News Release)

Rototec Oy of Pirkkala, Finland, and Robit Oyj of Lempäälä, Finland, have signed a comprehensive co-operation and delivery agreement. The target of the collaboration is to advance the utilization of geothermal energy both in Finland and Scandinavia.

The agreement contains also product development in co-operation to meet the industry's development trends, such as increasingly deeper geothermal boreholes.

The agreement is a continuum for the companies' existing co-operation being even more comprehensive.

Read More.........

USA, Idaho: Vacancy as Hydrogeologist at Idaho Geological Survey


University of Idaho, Boise, Idaho, USA

The Hydrogeologist position is the technical lead for hydrogeologic, geothermal energy, and groundwater research at the Idaho Geological Survey (IGS).

The Hydrogeologist is versed in groundwater modeling, the design and monitoring of groundwater networks, the collection and interpretation of hydrogeologic/groundwater data, the characterization of aquifers, and geothermal resource development.

The Hydrogeologist solicits funds from external research grants, develops and administers budgets, supervises staff involved in hydrogeology-related projects, and publishes and presents research results.

Necessary field skills include, but are not limited to, measuring water levels in wells, collecting groundwater samples, conducting aquifer tests, and supervising well installations and drilling operations.

As an IGS representative, the Hydrogeologist develops close working relationships with state and federal agencies, industry, and other non-governmental stakeholders involved with Idaho water and geothermal resources.

More Information.........

USA: Patent Awarded for Process Removing Silica from Geothermal Brine

Treated geothermal brine compositions with reduced concentrations of iron and silica (United States Patent and Trademark Office)

A patent filed in February 2014 has been awarded to its inventors Stephen Harrison and John Burba, III who were then employed by Simbol Inc. of Pleasanton, California, USA.

This invention relates to treated geothermal brine compositions containing reduced concentrations of iron and silica compared to the untreated brines. 

Exemplary compositions of the treated brine contain concentration of silica ranging from 0 to 80 mg/kg and concentration of iron ranging from 0 to 300 mg/kg. Exemplary compositions of the reduced silica and iron brines also contain reduced concentrations of elements like arsenic, barium, lead, and lithium.

USA: California Continues to Reign as Top Clean-Tech State

California Reigns as Top Clean-Tech State (Clean Edge)

Clean Edge, a clean-tech research and indexing firm, today released its annual U.S. Clean Tech Leadership Index which tracks and ranks the clean-tech activities of all 50 states and the 50 largest metro areas in the U.S. – from EV and renewables adoption to patent and investment activity. A free downloadable summary report is available at www.cleanedge.com.

As the Trump administration works relentlessly to dismantle climate and environmental protections and forwards a pro-fossil-fuel, climate-change-denial narrative, this year’s Index shows that states and cities are playing an outsized role in the expansion of clean energy, transportation, and energy efficiency.

California continues to dominate the Index, coming in first in the Technology and Policy categories, second in Capital, and no lower than second in any of the seven Index subcategories. The undisputed king of solar energy (and of geothermal energy) among the states, California received more than 27,000 gigawatt hours (GWh) of utility-scale and distributed solar power alone in 2016. That’s more than five times the amount generated in Arizona, the state with the second-most solar production, and enough to power more than four million California homes for a year. The nation’s most populous state has more than 1.2 million registered electric and hybrid vehicles, and garnered more than $9.5 billion in clean-tech venture capital in the last three years.

Indonesia: Star Energy Completes Loan to Pay for Chevron's Indonesian Geothermal Assets

Lucky number 13 for Star Energy loan (GlobalCapital)

Star Energy Geothermal has wrapped up its $660m dual tranche loan with 13 banks, following a three month syndication. The money was partly for the company’s purchase of a stake in Chevron’s Indonesian assets.

The borrower had enlisted three banks to arrange the $660 million borrowing, which was split into a $309m tranche A and a $351m tranche B.

Read More........

Iceland: HS Orka Looking Into Blue Lagoon Geothermal Spa Sale

Alterra Power Announces Potential Sale of Blue Lagoon Interest (Market Watch)

By McKay Savage from London, UK (Iceland - Blue Lagoon 09) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Alterra Power Corp. has announced that following several unsolicited expressions of interest, its subsidiary HS Orka hf will examine strategic alternatives for its 30% ownership interest in the Blue Lagoon tourist resort, located next to the Svartsengi Geothermal Power Plant, up to and including a full sale.

Ross Beaty, Alterra's Executive Chairman, said "The Blue Lagoon has grown substantially over the last several years, attracting significant investor attention from Iceland and elsewhere. Since the asset does not comprise a core part of our renewable power business, we think it's time to look at our options."

Stöplar Advisory in Iceland has been engaged to communicate with potential investors and administer the process.

Egypt: Government to Support Development of Renewable Energy

Egypt looks to the future with renewable energy plan (The Arab Weekly)

Egypt plans to produce 20% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2022.

(Courtesy CIA.gov)
Renewable energy projects are getting state support, easy and long-term loans from banks and a long list of clients, including gov­ernment agencies, ready to buy the electricity produced.

The government is considering a mechanism to allow the feed-in tar­iff (the price of electricity fed into the national grid) to rise when the price of electricity produced from fossil fuel rises. The Electricity Min­istry said the aim would be to en­sure that renewable energy produc­ers can profit from their projects.

Nine government agencies have signed contracts to buy electric­ity produced by renewable energy plants in different parts of the country.

Read More........

Canada: DEEP Geothermal Signs Power Purchase Agreement to Explore 5 MW Project

Geothermal agreement signed (News Release)

SaskPower, DEEP Geothermal to explore project in southeast Saskatchewan

SaskPower and DEEP Earth Energy Production Corp. (DEEP) have signed a
power purchase agreement that will allow further research into the potential for Saskatchewan’s first geothermal power project.

“We’re pleased to complete this agreement with SaskPower as another step towards the commencement of Canada's first geothermal power facility in southeast Saskatchewan,” said Kirsten Marcia, President and CEO of DEEP.

“DEEP’s Saskatchewan power facility will launch a brand new clean energy sector for the country, and we anticipate significant job creation during the construction and operation of the facility. DEEP is honored to be in partnership with SaskPower and their commitment to significantly reduce provincial GHG emissions through new and innovative projects like geothermal power.”

The signed agreement allows DEEP to continue a proof of concept study to determine the feasibility of a five megawatt project near Estevan. The proposed plant would generate renewable, zero emission, baseload power from a hot aquifer three kilometres under the Earth’s surface.

Read More.........

Monday, May 15, 2017

Global: Call for Papers for the Geothermal Energy Event of the Year - Submission Deadline is May 31st

GRC 2017 Annual Meeting - Call for Papers

Geothermal Resources Council Annual Meeting will be held Oct. 1-4 in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. Theme is “Geothermal Energy - Power to do More.”

The Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) has issued a call for papers for the world’s biggest geothermal conference of the year taking place October 1-4, 2017, in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

Themed “Geothermal Energy - Power to do More” the 41st GRC Annual Meeting will reflect the world-wide availability of a clean, dependable renewable energy that is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, providing both flexible and baseload power production.

The GRC Annual Meeting is the industry’s largest annual gathering of leading geothermal energy scientists, producers, renewable energy industry stakeholders, regulators, utilities, and key associated business leaders. The four-day event will offer technical, policy, and market conference sessions, educational seminars, tours of local geothermal and renewable energy projects, and numerous networking opportunities. Registration also includes entry to the GEA GeoExpo+.

Over 1,260 attendees came to the 2016 GRC Annual Meeting and GEA GeoExpo+ from around the world, highlighting the GRC’s role in connecting the global community. With increasing interest in geothermal as a reliable source of renewable energy providing both flexible and baseload power production around the world, the GRC is looking ahead to an even stronger international attendance in 2017.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Canada: Abandoned New Brunswick Mine to Provide Geothermal Heating and Cooling for Community

Sussex seeks economic boost by harvesting geothermal energy (CTV Atlantic)

The loss of 400 good paying jobs in Sussex, New Brunswick, due to the closure of the potash mine has many in the community still looking underground for an economic boost.

A massive lake is forming below the surface of the town as groundwater floods into the former mine. That lake will eventually be more than 10 kilometers long. As a result, the town of Sussex sees the potential to harvest geothermal energy. The underground caverns are expected to be filled within a couple of years.

"Companies will be able to come in, tap into the heat and cooling available through geothermal, set up and employ people locally," says Bill Thompson, coordinator of Sussex Economic Development.

USA, Texas: Lone Star State Could Have up to 10,000 MW in Geothermal Generating Capacity

Is Texas’ Energy Future Geothermal? (First Choice Power)

Back in February, 1,369 thousand mWh of electricity in the US were generated by geothermal energy. While Texas boasts a possible capacity of up to 10,000 MW, according to EIA’s statistics, not a single Texas kilowatt added to those standings. Almost all of that electricity was made in California.

According to the EIA, the unique geothermal sources deep below the Texas turf are largely untapped. For decades, both oil and natural gas drillers have tapped subterranean pools of hot water. It’s thought as much as 12 billion barrels heated to nearly 400°F — well above the boiling point to make steam — may be available. Research has identified 17,000 wells in Texas with bottom temperature ranges above 212 °F. Southern Methodist University’s Geothermal Laboratory and the University of Texas at Permian Basin have estimated Texas could have 2,000 to 10,000 MW in geothermal generating capacity. The hottest well, located east of Victoria, was recorded at 510°F!

USA, Nevada: Vacancy as Postdoctoral Fellow in Geothermal Modeling

Postdoctoral Fellow, Geothermal Modeling (Desert Research Institute)

The Desert Research Institute is accepting applications for a Postdoctoral Fellow in Geothermal Modeling supported by the Nell J. Redfield Foundation. This position is located in DRI’s Northern Nevada Science Center in Reno, NV. The Redfield Foundation Fellowship is awarded on a competitive basis to applicants with outstanding research and leadership potential in a broad range of topical areas related to renewable energy.

This position will focus on the area of geothermal energy including but not limited to:
  • Enhanced geothermal systems
  • Modeling of fracture propagation and interaction
  • Coupled thermo-hydro-mechanical models
  • Reservoir characterization and stimulation techniques 
  • Fracture control on permeability enhancement and reservoir development
  • Multi-phase flow and heat transport in fractured rock
This position is expected to overlap with DRI’s ongoing work in related areas. The successful candidate will be expected to participate in program development within the chosen focal area. Given satisfactory performance, and proven ability to generate research funding, it is anticipated that this position will evolve into a regular research faculty position.
Read More........

Iceland: IDDP 2 Deep Drilling Project Could Increase Output at Reykjanes Geothermal Power Plant by 30-50 MW

Alterra Power Announces Results For The Quarter Ended March 31, 2017 And Annual General And Special Meeting (News Release)

View from the MAR, by Robert Zierenberg. View from the Mid Atlantic Ridge spreading center where it come ashore on the Reykjanes Peninsula. The drill rig Thor in the distance is drilling the Iceland Deep Drilling Project - 2 drill hole, to a target depth of 5 km, in search of black smoker fluids formed under super-critical T-P conditions.  
Highlights for the quarter and subsequent period include:

Geothermal field improvement at Reykjanes: Field enhancement efforts (including well venting and turbine pressure adjustments) have achieved positive results, arresting the previous generation decline and resulting in increased generation compared to the fourth quarter of 2016.  The company expects further field and plant output improvement from the drilling of planned new wells, well work-overs, and potentially from the recent deep drilling project well drilled in Iceland.

Completion of potential high output well at Reykjanes field: A deep drilling program at Reykjanes was completed in January 2017 (IDDP 2), reaching a depth of 4,650 meters, making it the deepest well drilled in Iceland. Initial well readings (427°C temperature, 340 bars pressure) indicate supercritical conditions at the base of the well. Based on these early readings, if IDDP 2 is able to be utilized for electric production, it may produce as much as 30-50 MW of electrical output at the Reykjanes plant. The final production potential for the well will not be known until late 2018 after further tests and research are completed.

Read More........ 

Europe: EUR 10 Million Available to Research Enhanced Geothermal Systems in Different Geological Conditions

€105 million available for clean energy research (European Commission)

The last call for funding under the current Horizon 2020 'Secure, Clean and Efficient Energy' Work Programme opened today. Applicants are invited to submit their project proposals aiming to demonstrate innovative renewable energy technologies by 7 September 2017. The total available budget is €105 million.

The topic entitled Enhanced Geothermal Systems in different geological conditions, will be awarded €10 m.

Proposals should aim at testing EGS systems to ensure reservoir productivity in different geological settings and energy production at competitive costs. Proposals could propose up-scaling existing EGS systems.

The deadline for application in the all above topics is 7 September 2017 at 17h00 (CET time).

Djibouti: Tender to Supply Equipment for Geothermal Power Project

Djibouti requires supply of wellhead equipment (ESI Africa)

Courtesy Electricity de Djibouti
Electricity de Djibouti has received funds from the Agence Française de Développement (the French Development Agency) towards the cost of a geothermal exploration project.

It is intended that part of the proceeds will be applied to eligible payments under the contract for steel materials for drilling operations.

Electricity de Djibouti now invites sealed bids from eligible bidders for the procurement of the goods.

Bids must be delivered to the above office on or before 08:00am Djibouti time on the Wednesday 07 June 2017 and must be accompanied by a bid-securing declaration.

Read More........

Europe: Video from European Geothermal Energy Council

EGEC - The voice of geothermal in Europe

Guatemala: US Geothermal Updates on El Ceibillo Geothermal Project

US Geothermal's CEO Dennis Gilles on Q1 2017 Results - Earnings Call Transcript (Seeking Alpha)

Douglas Glaspey, Founder, President, Chief Operating Officer and Director at U.S. Geothermal Inc.

"At El Ceibillo, we have submitted an expression of interest (EOI) for a drilling grant from the German Development Fund or GDF on March 10. This grant would provide a 40% cost share for the drilling of up to three production size wells at El Ceibillo. We are awaiting the result of the EOI round, and if accepted will submit a full application for the funds."

"If GDF funding is used on the project, and a power plant is constructed, the grant becomes a low interest loan to the project. A well, or core hole may be drilled in 2017 to test the producing structure at the 2000 to 2600 foot range, at 600 to 800 meters, so that we can gain additional information on the resource before the expected request for proposal is issued by the Guatemalan National Electrical Energy Commission, or CNEE. The three CNEE commissioners responsible for the RFP are scheduled to be replaced during the month of May. So our hope is once that transition is done, we will see movement on the RFP."

Read More........

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Canada: Study Reveals Viable Technical and Potentially Cost Competitive Geothermal Resource in Alberta

Deep-Dive Analysis of the Best Geothermal Reservoirs for Commercial Development in Alberta: Final Report (University of Alberta)

Prepared by Jonathan Banks, Research Scientist, University of Alberta

Geotechnical  and hydrogeological data taken from well bore logs and rock cores were used to identify, map, and predict the power production potential of geothermal reservoirs spread across several municipal districts in western Alberta. These districts include the City and County of Grande Prairie, the Municipal District of Greenview, the Town of Hinton and the Tri-council of Clearwater County, Village of Caroline and Town of Rocky Mountain House.

This study provides critical information to stakeholders for catalyzing the growth of an as-yet non-existent geothermal industry in Alberta. On a broader scale, this study provides a case study for quantifying regional scale geothermal resources in sedimentary basins. Although considerable amount of work remains to be done in order to bring a commercial geothermal project to fruition in Alberta, this study conclusively reveals a viable technical and potentially cost competitive geothermal resource base in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin.

Read More.........

Philippines: 10 MW Biliran Geothermal Plant Plans to be Commissioned in September 2018

BGI assures stable, reliable power supply (Philippine Information Agency)

Phase 2 of BGI’s development plan is increasing production by additional 39 MW 

In a recent radio interview, a key personnel of Biliran Geothermal Incorporated (BGI) assured Biliranons of stable and reliable power supply.

Mark Julius Mecaral Oraa, BGI compliance and permitting officer,  revealed that BN6 production well is already tested positive of producing 5 MW of geothermal power source. He further said that BN8, another existing geothermal well developed and subject for further tests of BGI, is also expected to produce another 5 MW.

He added that BGI is currently negotiating with an electric power contractor provider for the construction of the first modular binary geothermal power plant in Biliran province which is expected to be commissioned in September, 2018.

The BGI marketing team is also in the process of marketing power sales agreement with electric power distribution utilities like BILECO and other electric power distribution utilities in Region 8, Oraa further said.

Part of the Phase 1 development plan of BGI is the production of 10 MW from BN6 and BN8 where a 13.2 KV line is to be installed and to be connected to BILECO from the power plant to be constructed in Caibiran, Oraa revealed.

He further said Phase 2 of BGI’s development plan is the installation of 69KV line up to the NGCP sub-station in Biliran town for another 39 MW produced utilizing the shallow neutral part of the Biliran reservoir.

Netherlands: 4,000 Meter Deep Geothermal Well Being Drilled for Greenhouse Warming Project

Geothermal heat for Westland greenhouse region near The Hague (DutchNews.nl)

Work on boring a four-kilometer-deep shaft below the Westland greenhouse growing region near The Hague has begun, the Financieele Dagblad  reported on Thursday. 

The pilot Trias Westland boring tower will be operative in September but it will be December before the first geothermal heat will be pumped up to serve the vast flower and vegetable growing greenhouses in the area. The heat comes in the form of water heated to 140 degrees. 

The €50m pilot project will be twice the size of other geothermal heating plants in the Netherlands. Trias Westland director Marco van Soerland said geothermal projects are much more expensive than solar panels as a heat source. 

The Westland auction as well as 43 growers have committed to buying the geothermal heat which, if successful, is expected to provide between 10% and 20% of annual heating needs.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

USA: Calpine Sounding Out Possible Buyers

Power Company Calpine Explores Sale (Wall Street Journal)

Calpine Corp., one of the biggest U.S. power generators including geothermal power plants at The Geysers in northern California, is exploring a sale.

The Houston company, which owns 80 power plants and has a so-called enterprise value of more than $15 billion, is working with investment bankers at Lazard to sound out possible buyers, according to people familiar with the matter. 

Calpine has attracted interest from a number of private-equity firms in an auction that is at an early stage, the people said. As always, there is no guarantee there will be any deal.

USA, Idaho: Drilling for Deepening of Three Wells at San Emidio II Geothermal Project to Begin Soon

U.S. Geothermal Inc. Reports First Quarter 2017 Results and Reaffirms 2017 Guidance (News Release)

U.S. Geothermal Inc. announced today its financial and operating results for the first quarter of 2017, ended March 31, 2017, reaffirmed guidance for 2017 and highlighted notable achievements in the first quarter of 2017.

Development Projects Update:
  • Purchased and installed a production pump and associated equipment into well RRG-5 at Raft River. The well was placed into operation on March 21, 2017 and is producing 1,100 gpm. Production from the Raft River plant is now operating at 1.2 MW over the 2017 plan.
  • An updated reservoir model for the San Emidio II reservoir identified the potential size of the resource as up to 47 net megawatts.
  • Permits were received for the deepening of 3 wells in the San Emidio II reservoir. Drilling will proceed this spring once weather and ground conditions allow access.
  • A power plant development permit application for San Emidio II, with up to three power units, was submitted to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management on March 29, 2017.
  • Received a $150,000 Small Business Vouchers grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop and evaluate the installation of an integrated solar topping turbine at Raft River, which would create a profitable Geothermal-Solar hybrid cycle.
  • Began advance resource evaluation work at both San Emidio II and Crescent Valley associated with the recently awarded $1.5 million SubTER grant from the Department of Energy.
  • Drilled a third water well at Neal Hot Springs, which was determined to be uneconomical. A fourth well was drilled which is capable of providing an estimated 80 gpm of fresh water for hybrid cooling. Negotiations are underway to acquire surface water rights in the area and testing of a brine treatment system that would provide cooling water is continuing.
  • Final turbine and generator bids were received from the shortlist vendors for the Geysers project.

USA, Washington: Bill that Improves Permitting Process for Geothermal Exploration is Signed Into Law

Washington Senate Bill 5470 (LegiScan)

Legislation advances the development of renewable energy by improving the permitting process for geothermal resources exploration in Washington State.

Geothermal Resource Potential Map of Washington State
Washington Senate Bill 5470 has been signed by the Governor. The legislation will become effective on 23 July.

"The public has a direct interest in the safe, orderly, and nearly pollution-free development of the geothermal resources of the state. The legislature hereby declares that it is in the best interests of the state to further the development of geothermal resources for the benefit of all of the citizens of the state while at the same time fully providing for the protection of the environment."

"The development of geothermal resources shall be so conducted as to protect the rights of landowners, other owners of interests therein, and the general public. In providing for such development, it is the purpose of this chapter to provide for the orderly exploration, safe drilling, production, and proper abandonment of geothermal resources in the state of Washington."

Nicaragua: New Injection Well Being Drilled at San Jacinto Geothermal Project

Polaris Infrastructure Announces 2017 First Quarter Results

Courtesy Polaris Energy Nicaragua S.A.
Polaris Infrastructure Inc. has reported its financial and operating results for the quarter ended March 31, 2017. 

Comprehensive preventative maintenance was completed on the Unit 4 turbine at the San Jacinto project over the course of three weeks in February 2017. This exercise was completed on schedule and on budget, and leaves the Company well positioned for consistent turbine performance throughout 2017 and 2018, given that the Unit 3 turbine was recently serviced as well, in July 2016. We estimate that downtime associated with turbine maintenance resulted in foregone average power generation of approximately 7 MW (net) in the first quarter of 2017.

The company's wholly-owned operating subsidiary, Polaris Energy Nicaragua S.A. (PENSA), which owns and operates the San Jacinto project, commenced drilling of SJ 11-2 on April 29, 2017. SJ 11-2 will be an injection well, providing important additional injection capacity as well flexibility to integrate a binary unit into the San Jacinto project, which is planned for 2018 installation. PENSA plans to commence drilling of a new projection well in July 2017, after findings from various geotechnical surface studies presently underway, have been incorporated.

USA, Nevada: Environmental Assessment for Dixie Meadows Geothermal Project

BLM completes Environmental Assessment for Dixie Meadows Geothermal Development Project (News Release)
ORNI 32, LLC (ORNI 32), a subsidiary of Ormat, is proposing the Dixie Meadows Geothermal Utilization Project in Dixie Valley, approximately 43 miles northeast of Fallon in Churchill County, Nevada.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Carson City District,  has completed an Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Dixie Meadows Geothermal Development Project. The BLM is also seeking public input under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act for the Project. This includes seeking information and identifying historic properties in or near the Project area. Public comments will be accepted through June 8, 2017.

This EA analyzes the potential impacts from the proposed development of this project including the construction of up to two 30 Megawatt net rated geothermal power plants; drilling, testing, and operating up to 15 geothermal production and injection well sites and eight core hole sites; constructing and operating pipelines to carry geothermal fluid between well fields and the power plant(s)s; and constructing either a 120-kilovolt (kV) or a 230-kV gen-tie and associated structures.  The geothermal portions of the Project are located within the Combined Dixie Meadows Geothermal Unit Area.  It also contains mineral rights to 760 acres of US Navy land known as the Lamb Mineral interests.  This project is located on public lands in Churchill and Pershing Counties, Nevada. 

A copy of the EA is available in the Carson City District BLM Office and on the project webpage at https://bit.ly/2qWH2MK

Global Geothermal News reported Tuesday on comments made by Isaac Angel - CEO, Ormat Technologies saying that Dixie Meadows is at an early stage, drilling is ongoing and this project is expected to generate approximately 15 megawatt to 20 megawatts by the end of 2018.