Tuesday, September 30, 2014

USA, California:

Calpine to Receive California Energy Commission Grant to Study Flexibility Enhancements at The Geysers (istockAnalyst)

Calpine Corporation, on behalf of its subsidiary Geysers Power Company LLC (The Geysers), announced today that it has been selected by the California Energy Commission (CEC) to receive a $3 million grant for “Advancing Utility-Scale Clean Energy.” 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.

“The Geysers is a true treasure of California,” said Joseph Ronan, Senior Advisor of Government and Regulatory Affairs for Calpine. “In continual operation for over 50 years, this keystone resource will continue to play a major role in helping California meet its renewable energy and climate objectives for years to come.”

The Geysers is the world’s largest geothermal resource developed for electric generation and produces approximately 6 million megawatt hours of reliable, low-carbon energy annually accounting for more than 15% of the delivered renewable energy in California.

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo:

FYI, Geothermal Industry: You’re Doing It Wrong (Renewable Energy World)

As the geothermal industry limps along year after year, a utility insider strongly suggests that it changes its tactics.


For years the geothermal industry has relentlessly boasted that it is a baseload resource, meaning it provides stable power similar to a coal or natural gas plant, except without all of those pesky carbon emissions. While upfront costs to develop a plant are higher than other renewable sources, geothermal leaders say that this baseload aspect makes it a more attractive resource in the long run since the grid needs more stable power as increasing amounts of intermittent renewables enter the landscape.

Though this may sound like bankable reasoning, Dave Olsen of the California Independent System Operator Corporation (CAISO) said geothermal needs to change its strategy to make any sort of progress in the energy market. During the opening session of the 2014 Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon, Olsen warned the crowded room that they might not like what he had to say.

Read More.......

GRC Annual Meeting:

Photos from the Opening Session of the GRC Annual Meeting

Alex Sifford, GRC Annual Meeting chair addresses the audience at the Oregon Convention Center



More photos from the Opening Session of the GRC Annual Meeting

Canada:

CanGEA Releases B.C. Geothermal Maps & Updates National Database (CanGEA)

British Columbia's Geothermal Power & Direct Use of Heat Potential

Over 50 maps, tables, graphs and databases now available!
  • British Columbia has enormous potential to produce geothermal power.  There is a sufficient developable resource to meet the entire Provinces’ power demand.
  • There is significant room to improve both the Data Coverage and Confidence of the estimates of British Columbia’s geothermal potential.
  • Priority geothermal exploration areas are identified through the confluence of key surface and subsurface data.

GRC Annual Meeting:

First Lady of Oregon Speaks at GRC Annual Meeting

Cylvia Hayes, First Lady of Oregon, spoke at the Opening Session of the GRC Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon yesterday, September 29.


Saint Vincent and the Grenadines:

Geothermal Energy Will Change SVG Says Minister Camillo Gonsalves (NBC SVG)

The possibilities which exist for the production of geothermal energy in St. Vincent and the Grenadines have been outlined by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Camillo Gonsalves.

Minister Gonsalves spoke of the potential for development in this area, as he addressed Vincentians during a Town Hall Meeting held in New York on Saturday night.

He said St. Vincent and the Grenadines could be transformed through the exploitation of this energy source.

Read More......

GRC Annual Meeting and GEA Expo:

Photos from The GRC Annual Banquet at the GRC Annual Meeting


GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

Geothermal Energy Event of the Year Goes to Portland


Keeping it weird!



Breakfast for the GRC staff at the GRC Annual Meeting thanks to Voodoo Doughnuts!

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Annual Meeting  & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo

Activities for Tuesday September 30

  • 6:30a – 5:00p GRC Annual Meeting Registration Desk Pre-function C
  • 6:30a – 4:00p GRC Speaker Ready Room A104
  • 6:30a – 8:00a GRC Speaker Breakfast A105
  • 7:30a – 5:00p GEA Exhibitor Registration Desk Pre-function C
  • 8:00a – 5:00p GRC Office C126
  • 8:00a – 4:00p GRC Technical Sessions B110-119 + C123
  • 9:00a – 6:00p GRC Poster Session Exhibit Hall C
  • 9:00a – 6:00p GEA Expo Open Exhibit Hall C
  • 9:40a – 10:10a  Morning Coffee Break  Exhibit Hall C
  • 12:00n – 1:30p GRC Student Leadership Luncheon Oregon Ballroom 204
  • 2:30p – 2:50p Afternoon Coffee Break Exhibit Hall C
  • 4:00p – 6:00p GRC Poster Session Reception/GEA Expo Networking Reception Exhibit Hall C
  • 5:00p – 7:00p Women in Geothermal (WinG) Reception Urban Farmer

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo:

GTO Director Doug Hollett Delivers Keynote at the Nation's Largest Industry Gathering, September 29, 2015

The Energy Department's Geothermal Technologies Office participated in the industry's largest geothermal gathering today in Portland, Oregon, with a keynote address by Director Doug Hollett at the Opening Session of the GRC Annual Meeting. 

Key initiatives of the Department's efforts to face down technical and market challenges were discussed. 


Climate Change:

Report Shows Marked Increase in U.S. CO2 Emissions (The Energy Collective)

As the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) recently reported, atmospheric CO2 concentrations have risen to record levels. In line with this report is the latest Monthly Energy Review from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) finding that U.S. CO2 emissions have reversed their downward trend, showing a significant increase over the past 18 months.

According to the report, CO2 emissions for the first half of 2014 are 2.74 percent higher than for the same period in 2013 and 5.96 percent higher than for the first half of 2012. This reverses the downward trend of energy-related CO2 emissions, which account for 98 percent of the U.S. total, from 2010 through 2012.

The latest EIA report continues on past reports, showing an increase in renewable energy capacity in the United States. Energy production from renewable sources – including wind, solar, biofuels, biomass, hydro and geothermal – increased by 3.83 percent in the first half of 2014 compared to the same period in 2013, and 7.35 percent from 2012. In total, 11.68 percent of the country’s energy production  and 9.89 percent of domestic energy consumption comes from renewable sources. Despite the solid and accelerating growth of renewable energy in the U.S., it is not keeping pace with the current trend in CO2 emissions.

Read More......

Monday, September 29, 2014

GRC Annual Meeting and GEA Expo:

Photos from the Opening Reception at the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo




More photos on the GRC Flicker Website......

GRC Annual Meeting and GEA Expo:

Geothermal Young Professionals Networking Dinner at GRC Annual Meeting (Think GeoEnergy)

Kells Irish Restaurant and Pub

On Monday September 29th following the first official day of the GRC Annual Meeting and GEA Expo in Portland, Oregon, the Geothermal Young Professionals Dinner will be held at Kells Irish Restaurant and Pub in downtown Portland, Oregon at 6:30pm.

This will be the fourth such event. The first, held in the fall off 2011 at Maria Maria, Carlos Santana’s restaurant in San Diego, was a rousing success. Subsequent events were held in Reno, Nevada in 2012 and Las Vegas, Nevada in 2013. The event is an unofficial networking dinner.

There are no sponsors. There are no fees to attend. Individuals are asked to purchase their own dinner and drinks.

Read More......

USA, Hawaii:

Major Hawaii Geothermal Project Cut in Half, Switches Areas on Big Island (Pacific Business News)

Hawaii Electric Light Co. has cut its planned bid to expand geothermal energy on the Big Island in half to 25 megawatts, and now is looking to another part of the island to develop the project, according to public records.

Boston Pacific Co. Inc., the Washington D.C.-based consultant hired by Hawaii regulators to monitor HELCO’s bidding process for what was once a 50-megawatt project on the east side of the island, still has concerns with the project.

For instance, HELCO’s new energy plan, which was recently revealed, does not include any new eastside geothermal resources, the resource being invited to bid in the request for proposals.

Read More.....

Japan, Ethiopia:

Toshiba Concludes a Memorandum of Understanding with Ethiopian Electric Power on Geothermal Power Generation (BusinessWire)

Toshiba Corporation today announced that the company has concluded a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Ethiopian Electric Power on a comprehensive partnership in geothermal power that will see the parties collaborate in power generation projects and personnel development.

Ethiopian Electric Power (EEP), a publicly owned utility, engages in the development of geothermal resources and the construction of power plants. Through the partnership with EEP, Toshiba will draw on its long-standing experience and expertise in geothermal systems to contribute to projects in Ethiopia. More specifically, the company will develop and manufacture major equipment, create operation and management guidelines, cooperate in personnel development, and start a waste heat utilization business.

Ethiopia is geothermal rich, with resources estimated at equivalent to 6,000 megawatts. However, this potential has yet to be explored and developed, and over 90 percent of the country’s electricity is from hydropower sources. Looking to the future, Ethiopia plans to increase its current installed generating capacity of 2,268 megawatts to 37,000 megawatts by 2037, and the development of geothermal power will play a significant role in reaching that target.

Toshiba International Corporation - Power Systems is at both numbers 741 and 739 at the GEA Expo, being held in conjunction with the GRC Annual Meeting at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon, September 28 - October 1.

Read More......

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GEA Geothermal Energy Expo: Open to the Public

On Wednesday morning, October 1 from 9am-noon, the GEA Geothermal Energy Expo, being held in Hall C of the Oregon Convention Center, will be free and open to Portland area public. If you are a local business owner, university student, teacher, or government official, you are welcome to walk the 120+ booths of the world's largest annual geothermal gathering free of charge.


GEA's most recent Annual Production Update shows Oregon has 17 geothermal projects currently in development. The GEA Expo floor features a unique opportunity for leaders in the business to showcase their projects, equipment, services and state of the art technology to the geothermal community. This is the premier gathering to learn about the latest developments in geothermal energy. The Expo, held in tandem with the GRC Annual Meeting is being held from Sept. 28 to Oct. 1.

Read More......

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

Cylvia Hayes, First Lady of Oregon, to Speak at GRC Annual Meeting

Keynote Speaker, Cylvia Hayes, is founder and CEO of 3EStrategies, a clean economy consulting firm, and First Lady of Oregon.

She is a Fellow and on the Board of Directors of the American Leadership Forum Oregon.

Cylvia has 23 years of professional experience in sustainable energy, economic development, green jobs, green building and sustainable forestry and agriculture.

She co-chaired the Oregon Renewable Energy Working Group, which developed the state Renewable Energy Standard, Renewable Fuels Standard, and other clean energy policies.

Cylvia has been honored as a Top 50 Leader in Oregon by Oregon Business Magazine, a Top 40 Under 40 by Cascade Business News and as a Central Oregon Earth Star. She has a Master’s degree in Environmental Studies from Evergreen State College.

Raised a farm kid, Cylvia was driving trucks and running chainsaws by the time she was 10 years old and has worked as a horse trainer, apple picker, fryer-chicken catcher, and heavy-equipment operator, among many other things. In her early 30s, she became the first person in her family to earn a graduate degree.

Cylvia Hayes will be a keynote speaker at the Opening Session of the GRC Annual Meeting on Monday, September 29 from 8:30am -12:00pm at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon.

USA, Washington:

Washington Future Energy Conference

November 5, 2014  |  Hilton Hotel - Seattle Airport



Registration is Open for the Washington Future Energy Conference – November 5, Seattle

GRC members receive a $25 discount. Use Discount Code “WAFEC14.”  

Returning for its fifth year, the Washington Future Energy Conference is Washington’s “must attend” clean energy event, connecting policy with practice and addressing the industry’s current challenges and opportunities. The conference is presented by the Northwest Environmental Business Council and the Washington State Department of Commerce.

Full information here or at www.futureenergyconference.com/wa14/

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Annual Meeting  & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo

Activities for Monday September 29

Sunday, September 28, 2014

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Pre-Meeting Workshop: U.S. Reporting Methodologies for Geothermal Energy (DOE Geothermal Technologies Office)

Sunday, September 28, 2014 from 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM (PDT), Portland, OR


The DOE Geothermal Technologies Office would like to invite you to participate in the GRC Pre-Meeting Workshop: U.S. Reporting Methodologies for Geothermal Energy.

The workshop will be held on Sunday afternoon prior to the GRC Annual Meeting. The GTO is seeking individuals in the geothermal community who are interested in participating in a discussion regarding the terminology and approaches used to characterize geothermal resources in the U.S.

NREL and LBNL, on behalf of DOE, will be presenting some of the work they have been doing related to geothermal reporting methodologies. The goal of this workshop is to introduce participants to the results of these initial analyses, to solicit feedback on the terminology, concepts, applications for geothermal reporting, and to collect input to guide the next steps for these efforts.

More information......

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Annual Charity Golf Tournament

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

Yoram Bronicki, Chairman of the Board, Ormat Technologies, Inc. to Speak at GRC Annual Meeting

Since joining Ormat in 1995, he has held different positions in R&D, projects and operations including President and COO, from 2007 to 2014.

He has served on the Ormat board of directors since 1997.

Mr. Bronicki obtained a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Tel Aviv University in 1989 and completed senior executives programs in the Stanford School of Business and the Technion Institute of Management.

Yoram Bronicki will be a keynote speaker at the Opening Session of the GRC Annual Meeting on Monday, September 29 from 8:30am -12:00pm at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon.

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo

Activities for Sunday September 28

  • 7:00a – 5:00p GRC Office C126, Level 1
  • 7:15a GRC Annual Charity Golf Tournament Shuttle Departs from the OCC Holladay Lobby Level 2
  • 7:30a- 8:00p GEA Exhibitor Registration Desk Pre-function C, Level 1
  • 8:30a GRC Fieldtrip - Mount St. Helens Volcano (arrive at 7:30 to check in) Departs from the OCC Holladay Lobby Level 2
  • 11:00a GRC Fieldtrip - A Wine Tour in the Willamette Valley (arrive at 10:00 to check in) Departs from the OCC Holladay Lobby Level 2
  • 1:00p – 8:00p GRC Annual Meeting Registration Desk Pre-function C, Level 1
  • 1:00p – 5:00p U.S. Reporting Methodologies for Geothermal Energy Workshop 
  • (DOE Geothermal Technologies Office) A105, Level 1
  • 2:00p – 6:00p GRC Speaker Ready Room (To upload PowerPoint Presentations Only) A104, Level 1
  • 6:00p – 8:00p GRC-GEA Opening Reception (Sponsored partly by Power Engineers & Cameron) Exhibit Hall C, Level 1

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Global:

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo

We're here waiting for you!


GRC Annual Meeting:

GRC Workshops

Two GRC Workshops were held at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon, USA on September 26 & 27, 2014. Exactly 100 attended the very informative but fun sessions.




See all the photos on the GRC Flicker website.......

The GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo will follow from September 28 - October 1.

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Annual Meeting  & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo

Activities for Saturday September 27

  • 8:00a – 5:00p GRC Office C126, Level 1
  • 8:00a – 4:30p GRC Workshop - Introduction to Hydrothermal Systems and Geothermal Exploration C121, Level 1
  • 8:00a – 4:30p GRC Workshop - Geothermal Leasing, Unitization and Water Use Legal Issues C124, Level 1
  • 1:00p GRC Board of Directors Meeting C122, Level 1

Friday, September 26, 2014

USA, California:

Richard Maullin Elected Chair of California ISO Board (Yahoo Finance)

 Maullin was president and chief executive officer of MCR Geothermal Corporation in the 1980's


Richard Maullin has been elected today as the new chair of the California Independent System Operator Board of Governors. Board members unanimously selected Mr. Maullin to the position during a special board meeting held today, a week after former Chair Robert Foster announced his resignation effective September 30 to pursue opportunities in the private sector.

Mr. Maullin, a sitting member of the board, was re-appointed to the ISO board in January 2012 by California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. for a three-year term that expires on December 31, 2014.

Mr. Maullin is a founding partner of Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates, an opinion research and consulting firm. Previously, he was president and chief executive officer of MCR Geothermal Corporation (1980-1985) which was the operator for the Francisco Steam Field which supplied steam to the California Department of Water Resources Bottle Rock Power Plant. Mr. Maullin was a member of the Social Science staff of the RAND Corporation (1965-1971). He served as chairman of the California Energy Commission (1975-1979) and as Deputy Secretary of State (1971-1974).

The California ISO is largest power grid operator in the west and facilitates a real-time wholesale energy imbalance market that will expand into six western states beginning November 1.

Read More.....

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

Patrick Reiten, President and CEO of Pacific Power, to Speak at GRC Annual Meeting

Patrick Reiten is president and CEO of Pacific Power at PacifiCorp, a position he has held since September 2006. Reiten is responsible for delivering electricity safely and reliably to 733,000 customers in Oregon, Washington and California, and also manages the West’s largest single owned- and-operated transmission system. Pacific Power is a 100-year old company serving 243 communities across the three states.

Prior to joining PacifiCorp, Reiten was president and chief executive officer of PNGC Power, an energy cooperative located in Portland, Ore. He was appointed to that position in May 2002 and was responsible for the overall operations of two corporate entities (PNGC Power and Power Resources Cooperative).

Prior to PNGC Power, Reiten served as an aide to U.S. Sen. Mark O. Hatfield, responsible for many issues, particularly those associated with the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. He also served as an official in several different capacities at the U.S. Department of Interior, including deputy director of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

Reiten has maintained director or board member leadership roles in industry organizations, panels and committees. He currently serves with multiple organizations, including Oregon Business Council, Associated Oregon Industries, Greenlight Greater Portland, The Freshwater Trust, Cascade Council of the Boy Scouts of America and Jesuit High School. He was appointed by Gov. Ted Kulongoski to the Oregon Energy Planning Council and is the chair of the Oregon Business Plan in 2010. Reiten also chaired Oregon’s Transportation Vision Committee.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science with an emphasis in economics from the University of Washington and completed executive training at the Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania.

Reiten lives in Portland with his wife Randi and their three children.

Patrick Reiten will be a keynote speaker at the Opening Session of the GRC Annual Meeting on Monday, September 29 from 8:30am -12:00pm at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon.

USA:

FORGE Newsletter (EERE/GTO)

The Energy Department envisions Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy (FORGE) as a dedicated site where scientists and engineers will be able to develop, test, and accelerate breakthroughs in enhanced geothermal system (EGS) technologies and techniques.


The U.S. Department of Energy's Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO) intends to make this a regular publication to keep our community informed on Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy (FORGE) news and developments.  Be on the lookout for this publication, as GTO will be providing relevant information on funding opportunity announcement (FOA) modifications, events, schedule updates, presentations, and research and development news as we move into Phase I of FORGE.

USA, Oregon:

Newberry EGS Demonstration Project

Update from the Field: Pumps in Place, Piping Assembled


The Newberry site has been busy with AltaRock staff and contractors assembling stimulation infrastructure over the last few weeks. We’re happy to report that the pumps are in place, generators have been wired in and piping has been welded up. All the equipment has been pressure tested and is up and running as planned.

Last night, we started to cool the well with low-flow cold water injection. After the wellbore is sufficiently cooled, we’ll install a distributed temperature sensing (DTS) fiber optic cable in the well. The cable provides real-time temperature data along the wellbore and is used in stimulation zone analysis.

Once the DTS cable is installed, a step-rate injectivity test will be performed. The step-rate test will establish a baseline permeability, to compare to the permeability enhancement due to multi-zone stimulation. After the baseline permeability is determined,  stimulation will begin.

Other ongoing site activities over the last few weeks have included groundwater monitoring, and geophysical survey projects overseen by Oregon State University.

A GRC Fieldtrip will visit the site of Altarock Energy’s Newberry Volcano Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) Demonstration project today and tomorrow, departing from the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon, September 28 - October 1.

Read More.......

Global:

Global Geothermal Alliance - Action Statement and Action Plan

On the occasion of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Climate Summit, the Heads of Delegation of Iceland, [Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Djibouti, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Fiji, France, Germany, Grenada, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Peru, the Philippines, Rwanda, Turkey and the United States of America], together with the World Bank Group, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the African Union [the International Geothermal Association (IGA), KfW Development Bank, and the International Geothermal Business Coalition] announced the launch of the Global Geothermal Alliance to serve as a platform for dialogue and knowledge-sharing among partners as well as a coalition for action to increase the share of installed geothermal electricity and heat generation worldwide.

Hungary:

Pannergy to Supply Geothermal Heat to Győr (Budapest Business Journal)

Arrabona Geotermia, a subsidiary of PannErgy has signed a contract to supply geothermal heat to the public utility and asset manager company of the city of Győr, western Hungary, Hungarian geothermal energy company Pannergy announced late yesterday.

Heating will begin late next year, and PannErgy will construct the supply system by then. PannErgy did not mention the cost of the investment, but added that it will be carried out partly with a HUF 1 bln EU grant won at a tender.

Read More......

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Annual Meeting  & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo

Activities for Friday September 26

Thursday, September 25, 2014

USA:

Geothermal Technologies Office Peer Review (EERE/GTO)

Mark your calendars! The 2015 Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO) Peer Review will be held at the Westin Westminster Hotel near Denver, Colorado in May 2015. Watch for registration information on the GTO website in the coming months.

May 11 – 15, 2015, Westin Westminster Hotel, Westminster, Colorado


The annual Peer Review offers geothermal stakeholders an opportunity to learn about the projects funded by DOE across a wide spectrum of technical complexity and funding magnitude, from research and development to demonstration and analysis. The event also opens a dialogue with respected researchers in geophysics, geochemistry, modeling, tools, and more. Regularly, GTO conducts this rigorous review by independent, qualified peers to assess key achievements in geothermal development and to meet strategic Energy Department guidelines. Each project represents a growing technology sector in conventional hydrothermal, low temperature and coproduced, and enhanced geothermal systems (EGS) technologies, as well as technical and non-technical research and analysis.

USA, California:

Tenure-line Position in Energy Resources Engineering at Stanford University

The Department of Energy Resources Engineering at Stanford University invites applications for a tenure-line faculty appointment. The position is at the assistant professor level. It is desired that the selected candidate be able to start no later than Autumn 2015.

The Department of Energy Resources Engineering focuses on a wide range of activities related to the recovery of the Earth’s energy resources (e.g., hydrocarbons, geothermal, and other renewables). The Department also has active research programs on carbon sequestration and clean energy conversions. ERE offers degrees in both energy resources engineering (B.S., M.S., Ph.D.) and petroleum engineering (M.S., Ph.D.).

More information......

China:

China Turns to Geothermal Energy To Tackle Carbon Emissions (Renewable Energy World)

As China scrambles to reduce its carbon impact, it has set gears in motion to develop its geothermal resources.


(Courtesy CIA.gov)
The UN has amplified its warning about carbon emissions as of late, stating that climate change is indeed real, and may very well be irreversible if countries do not act now. Since its latest declarations, all eyes are now focused on the world’s biggest carbon polluters, and China tops the list.

To combat its carbon critics while also supporting its rapid growth and development, China decided to kill two birds with one stone and focus its energy on developing renewables — fast. In the first half of this year alone, China installed more than 3 GW of solar capacity, ramped up its offshore wind development, and invested billions in electric vehicle adoption. But despite this progress, China still has a long way to go, so in July it announced that it would open the door to a technology that has been mostly shut out of the country for more than a decade: geothermal.

Read More......

East Africa:

Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda Seek Consultant for Power Grid Link (Reuters)

New Transmission line will deliver geothermal energy from Olkaria


Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda have invited bids for a consultant to oversee a feasibility study for connecting their nations by high voltage power line, part of efforts to meet growing demand for electricity and deepen integration of their economies.

The project aims to build a 400 kilovolt (kV) electricity line running from Olkaria, where Kenya is expanding geothermal power production, via Uganda to Birembo in Rwanda, a tender announcement published in Kenyan newspapers showed.

As well as expanding generation, Kenya has plans to add 5,000 km of power lines to its existing 3,800-km network by 2017. Only a third of Kenya's 44 million people are connected to the grid.

Kenya has at least 3,000 MW of proven geothermal energy in the Rift Valley, but exploits only about 200 MW, analysts say. It is currently adding 500 MW of geothermal capacity.

Read More......

New Zealand:

NZ Energy Quarterly Shows Renewable Electricity Generation Continues to Rise (Scoop.co.nz - Press Release)

Electricity from Geothermal Energy increased by 18% in one year


The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) today published the June quarter 2014 edition of the New Zealand Energy Quarterly.

The report, which contains MBIE’s latest data and analysis of energy supply and demand, shows renewable electricity generation increased to 78% of New Zealand’s electricity.

This included an increase in geothermal generation of 18% compared to the June quarter 2013, reflecting increased investment in geothermal capacity.

Read More......

Nicaragua:

Nicaragua Announces 4 Billion Dollar Renewable Energy Investment Plan (Eurasia Review)

Investment will help generate an additional 100 MW of geothermal energy


(Courtesy CIA.gov)
The Government of Nicaragua is projecting to attract 4 billion dollars in investment to finance various renewable energy projects over the next fifteen years.

The Minister of Energy and Mines, Emilio Rappaccioli said these investments will generate 253 MW of hydroelectric power; wind 300 MW; geothermal 100 MW; and solar 100 MW.

The Nicaragua Plan is to increase the share of renewables to 90% of the national energy matrix by 2020.

Read More......

United Kingdom:

Geothermal Energy is Used to Help Power Southampton (Stoke Sentinel)

Geothermal district heating is relatively common in continental Europe, where there are 212 schemes running, but Southampton has the only one in the UK.

Southampton's network, above, has its origins in the 70s oil crisis, when the Government was looking at exploiting alternative sources of heat and electricity.

While national interest in the technology waned once oil prices started falling again, Southampton City Council persisted with its project, which was launched in 1986.

The scheme involves a combined heat and power plant, meaning geothermal energy extracted from 1km beneath the surface is used to generate electricity as well as heat buildings directly.

Read More.......

United Kingdom:

UK City Set to be Heated by Volcano - Lifting Thousands Out of Fuel Poverty (Mirror.co.uk)

Stoke-on-Trent council and business leaders says the 350m-year-old rocks can provide a source of abundant and renewable energy


A 350 million-year-old volcano could soon be heating one of the largest cities in the Midlands.

Less than two miles beneath Stoke-on-Trent, Staffs, is a layer of rocks heating water to up to 105 degrees Celsius.

Experts think it is so hot because it is linked to volcanic activity back in the Devonian period.

Now council and business leaders believe this source of abundant and renewable energy can solve rising fuel costs faced by residents and employers.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s £52 million plans for a geothermal district heating network (DHN) involves bringing hot water to the surface through a borehole and transferring the heat to clean water.

Read More......

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Philippines:

40 MW Nasulo Geothermal Plant Inauguration Friday (Visayan Daily Star)

Energy Development Corporation will inaugurate its 40 megawatt Nasulo geothermal power plant in Valencia, Negros Oriental, on Friday.

Dwight Maxino, SNGP head and EDC vice president for Negros said yesterday that a reliability test conducted reached about 48 MW and is currently running on 40 to 45 megawatts.

First Balfour Inc. will turn over the new power plant to EDC to commence operation after more than 2 years of construction and testing. It is expected to serve several power contracts sealed between EDC and some power distributors.

Read More......

Comoros:

New Zealand to Help Comoros Islands Explore for Geothermal Energy

Gina Casar, UN Under-Secretary-General and Associate Administrator United Nations Development Program (UNDP) was present at a signing ceremony between officials from New Zealand and the Comoros Islands, located off the eastern coast of Africa.

Canada:

Direct Utilization of Geothermal Energy: Suitable Applications and Opportunities in Canada (CanGEA)

The Canadian Geothermal Energy Association (CanGEA) has announced the release of its report “Direct Utilization of Geothermal Energy: Suitable Applications and Opportunities for Canada.” This report is based on the direct use, or non-electric, applications of geothermal heat.

Any process that requires a steady supply of heat can be supplied by geothermal. The most common application is swimming and bathing in hot springs. Other applications include: greenhouses, fish farms, crop and pulp & paper drying, district heating systems, and many more!

Employing the direct use applications would create unique business opportunities that contribute to sustainable communities and produce jobs in Canada. It also has the potential to help diversify the economies of Canadian cities and towns.

CanGEA are bringing a direct use trade mission to the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo, September 28 - October 1 at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon. They will join the GRC Fieldtrip to Klamath Falls to view direct use projects in Oregon.

Slovenia:

Slovenia is a Banana Producer - Thanks to Geothermal (rtvslo.si)

(Courtesy Ocean Orchids)
Slovenia’s eastern Prekmurje has long been known as the country’s agricultural heartland. But in recent years, some Slovenian stores have begun to offer an unusual Prekmurje-grown product: bananas.

The tropical fruit is grown in greenhouses operated by Ocean Orchids. The company, founded by a team of entrepreneurs with experience working in Dutch greenhouses, began growing orchids and other exotic flowers in their extensive geothermal facilities near the village of Dobrovnik. Their gamble paid off and the flowers turned out to be an export success. With more than a million orchids being sold each year, Ocean Orchids turned its gaze to tropical fruit.

In 2009, the company introduced the first Slovenian-grown bananas to the market. The seedlings were bought in the Netherlands, and in the favorable environment of the greenhouse, the banana plants grew to maturity within fifteen months. When the bananas hit supermarket shelves, the first locally grown tropical fruit in Slovenia was an immediate success.

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Technology:

Patent Assigned for Silica Extraction From Geothermal Brine (TMCnet.com)
 
Lawrence Livermore National Security, Livermore, California, has been assigned a patent (8,840,859) developed by William L. Bourcier, Livermore, California, and Carol J. Bruton, Livermore, California, for "silica extraction from geothermal water."

"A method of producing silica from geothermal fluid containing low concentration of the silica of less than 275 ppm includes the steps of treating the geothermal fluid containing the silica by reverse osmosis treatment thereby producing a concentrated fluid containing the silica, seasoning the concentrated fluid thereby producing a slurry having precipitated colloids containing the silica, and separating the silica from the slurry."

The patent application was filed on Sept. 3, 2008.

Full-text of the patent .....

Australia:

Geodynamics Agrees to ARENA Grant Cut (Business Spectator)

Geodynamics has agreed on the variation and continuation of funding under its grant with the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

Geodynamics was originally awarded a $90 million grant in November 2009 by the Department of Resources Energy and Tourism, and has so far drawn down $32.4 million under this grant – which has supported the development of the Cooper Basin geothermal resources, particularly the drilling and stimulation of Habanero 4 and subsequent Habanero 1 MW Pilot Plant trial.

Under the variation agreed, the total overall grant being reduced by $30.45 million to $59.55 million with ARENA to now contribute up to $27.15 million of grant funds in support of a revised program of future activities. ARENA grant funds will be paid in arrears upon completion of milestone activities.

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Chile:

Geothermal Greenhouse Produces Positive Results (Fresh Fruit Portal)

(Courtesy FIA)
Chile’s first greenhouse heated entirely by geothermal energy has produced excellent results, with good crop yields and substantially reduced input costs.

The project is based in the commune of Lampa, close to the capital Santiago in the country’s center.

It has been co-funded by the Foundation for Agricultural Innovation (FIA) of the Ministry of Agriculture with resources from the Innovation for Competitiveness Fund of the regional government, and developed by agricultural entrepreneur Sergio Aguilar.

The system controls the temperature dynamically according to the needs of specific crops, which is said to reduce production times, increase yields and reduce costs for farmers.

“The results validate the use of the geothermal heat pump technology for climatization, especially important when using water in hydroponic greenhouses,” the head of the FIA initiative Abdo Fernández said in a statement

“It allows better quality vegetables to be produced throughout the year.

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USA, Hawaii:

VIDEO: Puna Geothermal Prepares For Pele (Big Island Video News)

(VIDEO: 8:09 Minutes)

With lava slowly making its way towards Highway 130, Plant Manager Cliff Townsend said Ormat owned Puna Geothermal Venture (PGV) is making the necessary electrical changes so it can “island” itself if it gets cut off from the grid.

PGV said they are also offering the community assistance with storage, and have offered police a place to stage a substation, if lava forces law enforcement to relocate on the other side lower Puna.

Director of Hawaiian Affairs Mike Kaleikini said that although lava is not currently headed in their direction, if Pele “decides to visit PGV” the geothermal company will “welcome her, show our reverence and respect, and definitely listen to her”. If PGV needs to shut down, they will.

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USA, Colorado:

Geothermal Energy Efforts Pick up in Colorado Town (The Daily Planet)

The town of Rico in south-western Colorado, is sitting on an untapped and significant renewable energy resource, and some residents are working toward harnessing it. Rico is home to the second highest subsurface geothermal temperatures in the state and that energy can be used to generate electricity, according to Matt Downer, a member of the Rico Geothermal Energy Subcommittee.

Last week, the Rico Board of Trustees agreed to send members of the committee as well as Mayor Gregg Anderson and trustee Gary Reid to Denver to meet with state and federal officials about how to move forward in extracting energy from the small town’s large geothermal presence.

“We know we have a great resource, but we don’t know the boundaries of that resource. We need to work with experts at the state and federal level to answer those questions and actually be able to utilize some of the things sitting at our feet. This could really benefit the community and the region over the long haul pretty dramatically,” Downer said.

It remains unclear exactly how much energy could be harnessed from the geothermal activity beneath Rico, as extensive and expensive testing is needed to determine if the large scale drilling required for geothermal energy extraction would be effective. But, interested parties in Rico will continue fighting for geothermal, and the meeting next month with state authorities should shed more light on the feasibility of more widespread development of the untapped resource.

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USA, California:

US, California Release Plan for Geothermal, Solar, Wind Projects (Sierra Sun Times)

State and federal officials sought Tuesday to bring order to California’s boom for renewable energy plants in the Mojave and other Southern California deserts, releasing a roadmap covering 22.5 million acres that designates some areas for large-scale solar, wind and geothermal plants and others for conservation of desert habitat and animals.

“We have amazingly special places here,” U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said in a news conference at a desert wind farm near Palm Springs with U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer and other officials releasing the multi-agency draft plan.

By taking a look at the desert as a whole, Jewell said, the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan’s designers are ensuring “the areas that should be protected are set aside. The areas that should be developed are streamlined” for building utility-scale renewable energy plants.

The plan released Tuesday recommends designating a total of 2 million acres as appropriate sites for future solar, wind and geothermal projects. Another 4.9 million acres under the U.S. Bureau of Land Management would be set aside as conservation areas, if the draft plan is adopted.

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Philippines:

Top Bid Announced for Mt. Apo Geothermal Output (Manila Standard Today)

FDC Misamis Power Corp., a unit of Filinvest Development Corp. owned by the Gotianun family, emerged as the highest bidder for the right to manage the output of Mount Apo 1 and 2 geothermal power plants.

Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) said FDC Misamis offered P128 million in monthly payment to become the independent power producer administrator of the North Cotabato geothermal power plants, with a rated capacity of 54.24 megawatts each.

PSALM president and chief executive Emmanuel Ledesma Jr.  said FDC Misamis topped the P50-million bid of SMC Global Power Holdings Corp. of San Miguel Corp., which also participated in the bidding Wednesday.

The power privatization firm said of the seven prequalified bidders, only the two companies submitted offers before the 12 noon deadline.  The winning bidder will sell the contracted capacity of the Mt. Apo geothermal plants.

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GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo:

GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo Welcomes World’s Largest Annual Geothermal Energy Gathering

Portland, Oregon, USA: September 28 through October 1



The geothermal energy world is coming to Portland, Oregon next week to take part in the largest annual event for the industry.

With the international geothermal power market booming, with a sustained growth rate of 4% to 5% and almost 700 projects currently under development in 76 countries, the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo is expected to be an exciting international gathering of geothermal companies, academics, financiers, policy leaders, students, and other individuals. The global geothermal community is gathering to attend or exhibit at the event, to be held from Sept. 28 to Oct. 1 at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon, USA.

This is the premier gathering to learn about the latest developments in geothermal energy. Last year, the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo hosted representatives from more than 37 countries. Participants from six continents were present. In 2014, an even broader attendance is anticipated.

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

“Portland was chosen as the site for this meeting because it is the gateway to a new geothermal frontier in the US Pacific Northwest,” said GRC Executive Director Steve Ponder. “Impressive geothermal sites and volcanoes are in the immediate vicinity and Portland itself has a vibrant downtown area with world class shopping and dining.”

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

“The GEA Expo will showcase the latest innovations that are taking geothermal technology to the next level,” said GEA Executive Director Karl Gawell. “We look forward to dialoguing with the many industry leaders expected from nearly every continent, making Portland one of the hottest venues for geothermal in 2014.”

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

USA:

Moniz Takes New Crosscutting Approach to DOE’s R&D Programs (Physics Today)

Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz
In remarks delivered during a 16 September event to display for US senators some of the national laboratories’ capabilities, and in comments to reporters at the event, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said the labs “are playing an important role in how we think about developing our strategic programs”—crosscutting thrusts of the department that might be more fully exploited.

Moniz cited subsurface science and engineering as “a place where we are not probably as well recognized as having tremendous capacity that cuts across so many of our programs: hydrocarbon production, geothermal, nuclear waste management, carbon sequestration etc.”

The agency’s high-performance computing programs, once mainly the province of the nuclear weapons enterprise, have migrated to involve primarily the science and energy programs. At a recent “ideas summit,” he said, top Department of Energy and lab officials discussed other crosscutting capabilities that the agency will propose to emphasize as part of its fiscal year 2016 budget submission.

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Philippines:

Govt OKs Mindoro Geothermal Project (Manila Standard Today)

The Philippines Environment Department has granted Emerging Power Inc. an environmental compliance certificate to proceed with drilling works on its $185-million Mindoro geothermal power project in Naujan, Oriental Mindoro.

The certificate allows Emerging Power to start drilling the first geothermal well  to generate steam that is capablle of supplying 40 megawatts of power to the whole island of Mindoro by the third quarter of 2016.

Local officials gave their support to the geothermal project, saying it will turn the island into the country’s “green energy hub.”

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Global:

At UN Summit, Plans Announced to Boost Low-Carbon, Renewable Energy in Africa, Small Islands (UN News Center)


A new initiative announced today at the United Nations Climate Summit in New York is expected to reduce dependency on fossil fuels in eastern and southern Africa at a time when regional demand for electricity is estimated to at least double over the next quarter century.

A second initiative, also coordinated by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), aims to deliver a cleaner energy mix for up to 4.7 million people on the frontlines of climate change in so-called small island developing States.

“These initiatives will help reduce emissions and contribute to improved health, wealth and opportunity, and a life of dignity for all,” said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who is hosting as Climate Summit today in New York to mobilize resources and generate actions that will reduce emissions and build resilience to climate change.

At the Summit, 19 ministers from Africa endorsed the Africa Clean Energy Corridor (ACEC). If developed as planned, the initiative will advance the development of renewable energy projects used by the Eastern Africa Power Pool and Southern African Power Pool from its current 12 per cent to at least 40 per cent by 2030.

Meanwhile, the Small Island Developing States Lighthouse Initiative pledges to mobilize $500 million within five years and deploy 100 megawatts of new solar photovoltaic capacity, consisting of new wind power, significant quantities of small hydropower and geothermal energy, and marine technology.

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