Thursday, December 27, 2012


Entrevista a La Asociación Geotérmica Mexicana, Parte II (Piensa en Geotermia)

Mostramos la segunda parte de la entrevista que realizamos a Luis Carlos Gutiérrez Negrín, nuevo presidente de la Asociación Geotérmica Mexicana. En este enlace podrán encontrar la introducción y primera parte. Parte I

Read More.....


Geotermia Andina Analiza 5 Nuevas Zonas Junto Al Proyecto Despoblados (Pensa en Geotermia)

Location of San Juan province in Argentina 
Tal y como señalábamos hace unos meses Geotermia Andina firmó una carta de intención con Barrick Gold Corp. para el desarrollo del proyecto geotérmico “Los Despoblados” en San Juan, Argentina.

A raíz de este proyecto se están evaluando otras 5 zonas situadas en el Valle del Cura que podrían contar con posibilidades de un futuro desarrollo. Estas zonas son; Chollay, San Crispin, Casa Pintada, Ciciliano y Los bañitos.

USA, California:

Geothermal Provides Baseload Power for Christmas in California

The California Independent System Operator (ISO)  maintains reliability and accessibility to one of the largest and most modern power grids in the world. Everyday it reports on the production of renewable energy in the Golden State as it strives to meets its target of 33 percent of electricity from renewable sources by the end of 2020.

On Christmas Day, as Californian families sat down for a turkey, candied ham or tamales, renewable energy provided  about 2,000 MWe, of a total of about 26,000 MWe load, at six o'clock in the early evening.

The sun had set and it was not a windy day in the west. However, geothermal power provided a steady baseload supply of 928 MWe.

Furthermore, geothermal power delivered the most electricity on Christmas Day, 21,354 MWh, over 40 percent of the total for renewables that day. Geothermal helped bring Christmas to California!


Greenpower Energy Raises Investments for Power Projects (Proactive Investors Australia)

Greenpower Energy of Freemantle, Western Australia, has raised up to A$976,632 in a partially underwritten rights issue that was offered on a 1 for 3 basis. The money will be invested in various power projects including a EGS geothermal exploration project.

Greenpower Energy is conducting a desktop study of a geothermal project near Esperance in Western Australia and shallow investigatory drilling is likely in 2013. The company has also secured a state government co-funded drilling grant of $120,000 for the geothermal project under the WA government's Royalties for Regions program.

Read More.....

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


Success Stories from the National Geothermal Data System (Arizona Geological Survey)
Utah Geological Survey testing discovered a new type of high-temperature energy reservoir in the Utah-Arizona-Nevada Black Rock desert basin that showed a potential equivalent to California’s Geysers, the Calpine Corp. (CPN) fields that produce a third of the world’s geothermal energy."

In closing the second full year of data collection within the State Geological Survey Contributions to the National Geothermal Data System project, we present a variety of success stories from the field. Some involve simple data collection, others involve new data exploration associated with the supplemental award provided by the Department of Energy’s Geothermal Technologies Program. We hope that you’ll enjoy these tales of geothermal and data preservation from across the nation.

As a reminder, funding for this project was awarded to the Arizona Geological Survey on behalf of the Association of American State Geologists by the Department of Energy’s Geothermal Technologies Program as part of the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act.

Read More......


Entrevista a La Asociación Geotérmica Mexicana, Parte I (Piensa En Geotermia)

Piensa en Geotermia se ha puesto en contacto con Luis Carlos Gutiérrez Negrín para poder charlar sobre su cometido como nuevo presidente de la Asociación Geotérmica Mexicana y que nos dé su opinión sobre la actualidad geotérmica del país. Debido a que la entrevista contiene una gran cantidad de información muy interesante, hemos decidico dividirla en 3 partes.

Read More.....

Costa Rica:

Costa Rica Avanza en Energía Geotérmica (

En un mediano plazo Costa Rica podría estar desarrollando un proyecto más para la producción de energía geotérmica. Esta tarde la Comisión de Ambiente que preside el Diputado Alfonso Pérez Gómez, conoció y adoptó como texto sustitutivo, el informe afirmativo de subcomisión del Proyecto de Ley Nº 17680 "Ley para el Aprovechamiento de la Energía Geotérmica (aprovechamiento de yacimientos de vapor en la tierra para producir electricidad) en el Área de Conservación Guanacaste".

Read More.....


Aboitiz Power Eyes Renewal of Chevron Geothermal Deal (ABS-CBN)

Aboitiz Power Corp. is hoping to renew its steam sales agreement with global energy giant Chevron for its 289 MWe Tiwi plants in Albay and the 458 MWe MakBan facilities in Laguna and Batangas.

Chevron Geothermal Philippines Holdings Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of American firm Chevron, operates the geothermal production field that supplies the steam requirement of the Tiwi-MakBan facilities.

Aboitiz Power’s existing agreement with Chevron will expire in May 2013.

The company is hopeful that with the potential investment of the SM Group into Chevron, negotiations would gather pace. The Sy family has taken a 60-percent interest in Philippine Geothermal Power Production Co. Inc., a joint venture with Chevron.

Read More.....

USA, California:

California Public Utilities Commission Gains Renewable Energy Expert (

Carla Peterman
An expert in renewable energy financing has been appointed to the five-member California state commission overseeing privately owned utilities, including PG&E, Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric.

Pending Senate confirmation, Carla Peterman, 34, of Sacramento, currently with the California Energy Commission, will joint the California Public Utilities Commission. She replaces Timothy Simon, a former securities and banking industry attorney, whose term ends at year's end.

In just two years, Gov. Jerry Brown has reshaped the California Public Utilities Commission, hand picking four of its five members.

The utilities commission is poised to make key decisions in 2013 that will re-calibrate local utility rates, influence the future of the idled San Onofre nuclear plant and determine private incentives for energy conservation and renewable energy projects such as wind, solar and geothermal plants.

Read More......


Report - Geothermal Electricity Plant Operation in the U.S. (wxtx)

As a producer of a renewable energy source, the geothermal power industry has lagged behind wind and solar power. According to IBISWorld industry analyst Josh McBee, “even though geothermal exhibits a higher availability rate, the viability of this energy being produced on a commercial scale is limited by geography, as deposits of high-temperature subsurface water are required to produce geothermal electricity.”

As such, the geothermal power industry is concentrated in the Western US region, where major companies like Calpine and Ormat have their operations. The region is led by California, where more than 80.0% of all US geothermal electricity is generated.  Report......


Maibarara Geothermal to Get Connected (Comtex News Network)

The project site and Mnt. Makiling
Courtesy Maibarara Geothermal, Inc. 
Maibarara Geothermal, Inc. (MGI) has signed an interconnection agreement, with Manila Electric Company (MERALCO), for the physical interconnection of the generation and connection facilities of MGI's 20 MWe power plant to MERALCO's distribution system.

The power facility being constructed in Brgy. San Rafael, Sto. Tomas, Batangas will be connected to MERALCO's existing 115kV line in Calamba, Laguna, 6 km away

Read More.....


Philippines Gov’t Aiming for Top Spot in Geothermal Production (BusinessWorld Online Edition)

The Philippines government wants the country to be the world’s largest producer of geothermal energy by increasing its installed capacity to 3,307 MWe from 1,902 MWe by 2030, an official of the Department of Energy (DoE) has said.

"Our plan is to be the largest producer of geothermal energy in the world by 2030. We will need around 1,405 MWe of additional capacity by 2030," Ariel D. Fronda, chief of the DoE’s geothermal energy management division, said in a phone interview. "This means an increase of around 75% by 2030. This plan is part of the renewable energy program, which in turn is part of the Philippine Energy Plan of 2012 to 2030," Mr. Fronda added.

Read More....

Friday, December 21, 2012

USA, Idaho:

U.S. Geothermal Announces $4.37 Million Financing (Marketwire)

U.S. Geothermal Inc. announced today that it has entered into agreements with a number of investors, pursuant to which they have agreed to acquire, in total, approximately 11,810,816 units of company stock at a price of $0.37 per Unit.

Each Unit consists of one share of common stock of the company and one half of one common stock purchase warrant. Each warrant will entitle the holder thereof to acquire one additional share of common stock of the company for a period of 60 months following the closing of the offering for US$0.50 per share of common stock. The gross proceeds of the unit offering are expected to be approximately US$4.37 million.

Read More.....

USA, Hawai'i:

Big Island Geothermal Pioneer Passes (Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

Fred B. Smales, a businessman who drilled the first geothermal well on Hawaii island, died Dec. 1 at his home in Kaneohe. He was 98.

Smales, born in Keo­kuk, Iowa, was an investor and president of Thermal Hawaii Power, he drilled the first geothermal well on Hawaii island in 1960.

Smales, a prominent yachtsman who raced in five Transpac races from Los Angeles to Hono­lulu, received the National Governor's Association Distinguished Citizens Award in 1986.

Read More.....

USA, Oregon:

Map: Where’s the Geothermal Energy in Oregon? (EarthFix)

The Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries has published a new map showing hot springs, volcanic vents, test wells, and other geothermal resources across the state.

Naturally occurring hot water and steam found mostly in volcanic parts of the West can be used to heat homes and generate electricity.

Clark Niewendorp, a GRC member, who developed the map, says existing geothermal technology requires hot water that’s between 70 and 90 degrees Celsius (or between 158 and 194 degrees Fahrenheit) for commercial power generation.

European Union:

EU Renewable Energy on the Rise (PDF) (EurObserv’ER)

Shares of renewable energy in the national gross final energy consumption as well as the indicative trajectory for 2011 and the renewable energy target for the top 10 EU countries for the year 2020.
The EurObserv’ER Barometer regularly publishes indicators reflecting the current dynamics in renewable energies (solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal and biomass, biogas, biofuels) worldwide and within the European Union (EU).

The latest report on the state of renewable energy in the EU has some positive news. The renewable energy share of gross final energy consumption in the European Union amounts to 13.4% in 2011 against 12.5% in 2010, an increase of 0.9 percent. The report attributes the increase to more renewable energy being available against less energy consumption.

Read More......


Greetings to the
global geothermal community from the
Geothermal Resources Council

Thursday, December 20, 2012


Hellisheiði Geothermal Power Plant in Reykjavik

New Zealand:

Te Mihi Geothermal Project Enters Start-Up Phase (Stuff)
(Courtesy Google Maps)
Contact Energy's Te Mihi geothermal power station, northwest of Taupo on the north island of New Zealand,  is coming to life as progress on construction continues.

Contact spokeswoman Vanessa Lai said they are now moving into the start-up phase of the project.

"The team on site have recently installed the first steam turbine unit and is well advance constructing the second unit, which will be responsible for generating electricity for the power station."

With more than 500 working on site, the 166 MWe power station is due to be completed mid- 2013 and will provide enough renewable energy for 160,000 homes.

Read More.....

Australia, Indonesia:

Panax Geothermal Optimistic about Indonesian Geothermal Power Deals (Proactive Investors Australia)

Panax Geothermal, based in Queensland, Australia, remains confident that the Power Purchase Agreements for its Indonesian geothermal projects are progressing through the execution process within the Indonesian Government.

It noted there were no impediments or issues relating to the execution of the agreements and that progress was being followed up on a daily basis to ensure that it is completed as soon as possible.

Discussions with interested financiers – predominantly Asian, and a well known Asia-based equity fund in particular – is also progressing, with Panax expecting to make an announcement early in 2013.

Panax also expects to receive a A$300,000 research and development tax rebate in January 2013.


The 2012 U.S. Geothermal Industry: Success, Expansion, and Familiar Frustration (Renewable Energy

After several painfully slow years for U.S. geothermal developments, industry advocates will be glad to hear that 2012 turned out to be one of those most successful years in the past decade. With more than 100 MWe of capacity brought online and plenty of burgeoning international markets, the geothermal industry has reason to celebrate – despite some nagging ongoing barriers to development.

Read More.....

USA, Oregon:

Neal Hot Springs Project Nears Completion (News Release)

U.S. Geothermal Inc., today announced an update on the construction of its three module, 22 net megawatt geothermal power plant at the Neal Hot Springs project, located in Malheur County, Oregon.

Construction work for the air cooled power plant is largely complete and the contractor is now focused on achieving commercial operation within the fourth quarter of 2012. Module 3 achieved mechanical completion and will be charged with working fluid tomorrow. The contractor is also performing final system checks of Module 3 in preparation for starting and synchronizing its output to the grid.

Read More.....

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Ram Power Announces Grid Synchronization for Its Phase II Expansion at San Jacinto-Tizate (News Release)

Ram Power, Corp.,  has announced that the Phase II expansion at San Jacinto-Tizate has been successfully synchronized to the Nicaraguan national integrated electrical grid. The Company expects commercial operation of the Phase II expansion to begin at the end of the month. In addition, the company received its final $18 million draw under the Phase II Credit Facility which will be used for payment of remaining Phase II construction costs, funding of project reserves and payment of interest during construction.

Read More.....

USA, California:

Stanford Geothermal Workshop 

The Workshop will take place starting on Monday 11th February at the Frances C. Arrillaga Alumni Center on the Stanford Campus. Walk-in Registration and a continental breakfast begin at 7:30 am on the first day. You can avoid the long lines to register by doing so in advance. Registration.

Registration before Tuesday 1st January is discounted to $525, normal registration after Tuesday 1st January and before Friday 1st February is $575. Late (after Friday 1st February) or on-site registration will be $675. Student registration is $100. You can also print out the registration page and fax it to Stanford Geothermal Workshop at +1(650)725-2099.

Blocks of rooms have been reserved at both the Sheraton  and Stanford's SLAC Guest House. The Sheraton is offering a special rate of $199, when you tell them you are with the Stanford Geothermal Workshop. The SLAC guesthouse is offering a special rate of $119 and you need to mention the Geothermal Workshop. To obtain the group rate, reservations to the Sheraton need to be made before December 26 and those to the SLAC Guest House need to be made by December 26.

Preliminary workshop program

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

USA, Nevada:

BLM Approves Coyote Canyon South Geothermal Exploration Project (

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Carson City District-Stillwater Field Office, has completed the final Environmental Assessment (EA) and issued a Decision Record to allow the Coyote Canyon South Geothermal Exploration Project proposed by TGP Dixie Development Company, LLC. The proposed geothermal exploration project is located in Dixie Valley, Churchill County, approximately 50 miles northeast of Fallon, Nevada.

This EA analyzes potential impacts from the proposed exploration activities. The primary objective of the project is to explore for and evaluate the characteristics of the geothermal resources in the Coyote Canyon South Project area.

Read More....


Philippines DOE Awards Four Geothermal Contracts (Manila Bulletin)

At least four geothermal service contracts will be signed and awarded to project developers by the Philippines Department of Energy (DOE) before year 2012 winds up.

A geothermal contract for the Negron Cuadrado prospect in Zambales and Pampanga will be awarded to AP Renewables, Inc. of the Aboitiz group, DOE director Mario Marasigan has confirmed.

Three other contracts will be cornered by Basic Energy Corporation for the Iriga geothermal power project in Albay and Camarines Sur; Mariveles prospect in Bataan; and East Mankayan prospect along Ifugao, Benguet and Mountain Province.

These contracts have been “waiting signing and awarding for 2012,” a document culled from the energy department has stipulated.

Read More....

USA, Nevada:

Gradient Resources Announces Completion of $155m Financing Through Lending Group (News Release)

Gradient Resources Inc., recently completed a $155M financing for construction of the first phase of its Patua Geothermal Project. Initial work at the Patua site, located near Fernley, Nevada, began in 2011. 
The Patua Project will proceed in phases, the first being 30 MWe, under a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD).  Gradient’s Patua plant will become operational and is set to deliver power to the grid in September of 2013.

Myanmar (Burma):

Burma has Considerable Geothermal Potential - Study (ThinkGeoEnergy)

In a study issued earlier this fall by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the bank assesses the energy sector for Myanmar (Burma), geothermal is seen as a currently underestimated potential energy source for the country.

The report, Myanmar: Energy Sector Initial Assessment, was written as an initial assessment of Burma’s energy sector and looking at what the country can do to develop a concise strategy to develop and strengthening its energy sector. This includes rehabilitation work on power generation, transmission and distribution, as well as development of renewable energy projects, among others.

While the report focuses on more general energy market issues, it explicitly mentions the considerable geothermal potential of the country.

Read More....


Mitsubishi’s Growth Strategy in Light of Recent Acquisitions (ThinkGeoEnergy)

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries pushes forward with continued growth and business expansion through acquisition of Pratt & Whitney Power Systems, which includes Italian Turboden, creating a much stronger player and increases market competition.

Read More.....

Japan, Iceland:

Icelandic Ambassador Stefansson Advocates Geothermal Energy Use in Japan (United Nations University)

On 5 December 2012, Mr. Stefan Larus Stefansson, ambassador of Iceland to Japan, delivered a lecture at the United Nations University (UNU) Headquarters in Tokyo. His lecture was part of the University’s Ambassador Lecture Series, a forum that provides an opportunity for UNU students, fellows and interns to directly engage with government officials on political, economic, and social issues.

Amb. Stefansson spoke on the topic of geothermal energy utilization in Japan, advocating that the country should harness its enormous untapped geothermal energy resources by using Iceland’s 85-year history of success in this area as a model. The ambassador highlighted that this was his second time speaking on the issue at UNU, having previously participated in the Japan– Iceland Geothermal Forum in November 2010.

Read More.....


Drilling for Dollars: Notable Developments in Geothermal Finance (Renewable Energy

U.S. Geothermal capacity additions are on track to top 100 MWe in 2012, making this year one of the best for geothermal deployment in the last decade. This could be a tentative sign that conditions have been improving for geothermal finance (traditionally, finance has been one of the principal barriers to the technology's wider adoption). Projects coming online this year have demonstrated some creativity in leveraging financial opportunities.

From commercial debt, to federal incentives, to project bonds, the geothermal development community has demonstrated some creativity in leveraging alternative financing options. However, as federal incentives expire, and as macroeconomic shifts in the debt markets play out over the next several years, developers will need to continue their search for progressive financing strategies if they want to expand on this year's uptick in capacity deployment. And with as much as 872 MWe of confirmed geothermal projects in the early stages of development and looking for capital, there are gains to be had if developers can find novel ways of opening the taps.

Read More.....


U.S. GEA Review of the Year (News Release)

The U.S. Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) looks back on the domestic geothermal power industry in 2012.

In 2012, seven new geothermal projects and additions came online in three different states, totaling 147.05 MW of gross capacity. This represents the second highest increase in geothermal power capacity over a calendar year since the production tax credit (PTC) was extended to geothermal in 2005, and a 5% percent increase over 2011 year-end data. The capacity added in 2012 would meet the residential needs of a city the size of Vancouver, Washington or Kansas City, Kansas.

Read More.....


EGS Geothermal Project Awarded EU Funding (

Twenty-three innovative renewable energy demonstration projects will receive more than €1.2bn in funding after being selected by the European Commission to benefit from its NER300 program including a geothermal plant drawing energy from hot dry rocks in south-eastern Hungary.

The projects, located in 16 European Union member states, will be financed from the revenue generated by the sale of 200 million allowances from the new entrants' reserve of the emissions trading system, the bloc's flagship environmental policy – meaning that the financing will come from polluters that have bought emissions permits. Each allowance bought allows the purchaser to emit one tonne of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

The Commission informs that “a geothermal power plant, near the village of Ferencszállás in south-eastern Hungary, will use geothermal energy from hot dry rock in a compressional stress field. An Enhanced Geothermal System will involve the drilling of four 4km deep production wells and two re-injection wells, and the hydraulic fracturing of the reservoir under the compressional stress fields. Net capacity of the plant is 8.9 MWe; the electricity is expected to be sold to the electrical grid.”

Read More.....


Geothermal’s Big 12 Events of 2012 (Greentech Media)

With 128 megawatts of geothermal coming on-line in 2012, Greentech Media presents a geothermal year in review.

More than 128 MWe of geothermal capacity came on-line in the U.S. in 2012, the second largest annual capacity addition since 2005.

By comparison, the U.S. will install more than three gigawatts of solar this year, and the U.S. wind industry may hit 12 gigawatts. That’s why a developer recently called U.S. geothermal “sort of nichey.”

Competition from historically low natural gas prices was, as one developer put it, “the threat” in 2012. But geothermal leaders expect gas price volatility to end its own threat. Geothermal’s bigger challenge might come from utility-scale solar and wind. Those resources win the majority of utility contracts, though geothermal offers the same long-term price certainty.

Read More.....

USA, California:

Fitch Rates CE Generation Lower Because of Reduced Revenue from Imperial Valley Geothermal Projects (Reuters)

Fitch Ratings has downgraded CE Generation LLC's (CE Gen) $400
million senior notes ($169 million outstanding) due 2018 to 'BB-' from 'BB+.'
The downgrade reflects Fitch's long-term expectation for reduced cash flow due
to lower energy revenues earned at the portfolio's geothermal projects.

CE Generation owns and operates ten geothermal facilities in the Imperial Valley of California. It is equally owned by MidAmerican Geothermal, LLC, an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company and TransAlta (CE GEN) USA, Inc. , a wholly-owned subsidiary of TransAlta Corporation.

The Rating Outlook has been revised to Negative from Stable due to the potential
for worse financial performance if the current low energy pricing environment
persists over the next two years.

Read More.....

USA, California:

Training Announcement: A Geothermal 3-Day MBA

An introduction to the technology, markets, economics and finances of geothermal. 8-10 May, 2013, San Francisco, United States.

Course highlights:
  • A comprehensive understanding of geothermal energy, with particular focus on power generation;
  • Key aspects of geothermal technology - including exploration, drilling and plant operations - explained in clear language suited to senior commercial people and non-engineers;
  • Description and discussion of the key economic and risk factors that make geothermal different from other renewable energy sources;
  • The market and economic context of geothermal, including markets, external influences and trends;
  • Hear about the challenges as well as the opportunities in an independent, hype-free environment;
  • Business Planning: collaborative work to develop and analyze a geothermal power business case, including practical, policy, market, economic and financial (cash flow and return) analyses

Monday, December 17, 2012

New Zealand:

New Zealand Maori Win Appeal Hearing in Water Dispute (Bloomberg)

New Zealand’s Maori Council, which represents the nation’s indigenous people, won the right to challenge the government’s plan to sell shares in state-owned energy companies.

The New Zealand Supreme Court agreed to hear the appeal on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1, according to a posting on the court’s website today. High Court Justice Ronald Young dismissed the Maori challenge on Dec. 11, ruling the courts couldn’t review parliament’s decision to change the status of the companies from state-owned to mixed- ownership models to allow the sale.

New Zealand’s government, is cutting non-essential spending and selling assets to speed up a return to surplus. The government forecasts it will raise at least NZ$5 billion over the next three to five years by selling as much as 49 percent of Mighty River Power Ltd.

The Maori Council and groups supporting it claim the asset sales would be unlawful because they ignore outstanding Maori claims to freshwater and geothermal resources.

Read More.....


Latest Newsletter from the European Geothermal Energy Council

The European Geothermal Energy Council (EGEC) has published their latest newsletter.


Program Published for the 2nd International Geothermal Congress in Chile

The Chilean Geothermal Energy Association (ACHEGEO) has released the program  for the 2nd International Geothermal Congress to be held April 11-12, 2013 in Santiago, Chile.

The program, including a section in English, can be downloaded here.


Energía Andina Will Invest US$ 50 Million in Chile in 2013 (Piensa en Geotermia)

The chief executive of Antofagasta Minerals S.A. (AMSA), Diego Hernandez , spoke Monday of projects in the field of non-conventional renewable energy (NCRE), particularly geothermal, by Energía Andina , a company 60% owned by AMSA and 40 % by Australia's Origin Energy.

Energía Andina has stated that  they will invest $ 50 million in geothermal exploration tasks during 2013.

Read More.....


La Asociación Geotérmica Mexicana Realizó Su XX Congreso Anual En Morelia (Piensa en Geotermia)

Attendees at the Mexican Geothermal Association held in late September
(Courtesy  Mexican Geothermal Association)
La Asociación Geotérmica Mexicana celebró a finales de septiembre su XX Congreso anual y paralelamente, el I Congreso Geotérmico Latinoamericano en conjunto con la Asociación Geotérmica de El Salvador y la Asociación Colombiana de Energías Renovables.

Read More....

Friday, December 14, 2012


Snow Storm
An entry in the 2010 GRC Photo Contest

USA, California:

Calpine is Granted 30-year Extension on Geysers Geothermal Site (Lake County News)

The Davies Estate geothermal well drilling pad
near Anderson Springs, Calif.
(Courtesy Calpine)

The Lake County Planning Commission on Thursday voted unanimously to approve Calpine's request for a 30-year use permit extension on its Davies Estate geothermal drilling site.

Despite concerns about seismicity voiced by the residents of the nearby community of Anderson Springs – they asked that the seismicity issue be made a part of the permit – the commission found that extending the use permit until Aug. 11, 2043, met the standards of a Class 1 Categorical Exemption under the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA.

County staff reported that the permit, first issued by the commission in October 1983, allows for a total of four geothermal wells on an existing pad, as well as accessory roads and pipelines.

Read More....


Greenpeace Pitches Power Revolution - Including Geothermal (Renewable Energy

Renewable energy potential for 2050 in EJ/year by energy source (Greenpeace)
In its latest Energy [R]evolution scenario, Greenpeace gives an optimistic outlook for renewables' ability to diminish the risks of climate change from CO2 emissions. While the economic crisis has driven down profits, renewables are now 'directly competitive with heavily subsidized conventional generation in an increasing number of markets,' the report states. The authors now argue for a 'transformation', to a flexible system based on a wide variety of renewables. While the shift will require new infrastructure and storage, there are 'no real technical or economic barriers' to be overcome. 'It is the lack of political will that is to blame'.

Within the renewables sector, a host of technologies will combine to replace traditional power installations: Photovoltaics, Concentrating solar power (CSP), Wind power, Biomass, Ocean energy, Hydropower, and last but not least, Geothermal.

Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) and the improvement of low temperature power conversion could make it possible to produce geothermal electricity anywhere.

Assuming global growth of 15% per year up to 2020, adjusting to 12% up to 2030 and still 7% per year beyond 2030, a cost reduction potential of more than 60% by 2050 is feasible. For conventional geothermal, costs are expected to be $0.15/kWh-$0.09/kWh. Production costs for EGS are expected to fall to around $0.8/kWh, compared with the current $0.20-0.30/kWh.

New Zealand, Indonesia:

New Zealand Sets the Pace for Geothermal in Indonesia (Renewable Energy

The signing of a Memorandum of Understanding, which took place during Prime Minister John Key’s visit to Jakarta in April this year, has begun to actualize for geothermal energy in New Zealand. The MOU with state owned Pertamina Geothermal Energy (PGE) presents a range of collaborative agreements, and on the 7th of December the Pertamina Learning Centre in Jakarta launched the Pertamina Corporate University.

One of the university’s significant courses will be a Geothermal Master’s Degree program for Pertamina’s employees run by Indonesia’s Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) and Auckland University. The first program to run will initiate 21 employees from PGE.

Read More.....

Thursday, December 13, 2012


USTDA Promotes Geothermal Power Development In Indonesia (News Release)

Today, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) awarded a $546,766 grant to PT Teknosatria Energi Geothermal (TEG) to partially fund a feasibility study for a 30 MWe geothermal power project at the Cibuni site in West Java, Indonesia. TEG is a private Indonesian company established to develop the geothermal project and is part of the PT Satria Gemareksa group.

The USTDA grant will allow TEG to refine its Cibuni geothermal resource model using specialized U.S. modeling tools to finalize production well plans, assess power plant siting conditions and technology options, and prepare preliminary engineering designs for the surface gathering system and power plant to facilitate engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) planning for the project. Once operating, the Cibuni geothermal power plant will produce about 236.5 million kilowatt hours of electricity annually, meeting the power needs of over 400,000 Indonesian citizens using clean, renewable energy.

Read More.....

New Zealand:

Maori Council Claim on Geothermal Resources Struck Down (New Zealand Herald‎ )

Tino Rangatiratanga flag
The “national Maori flag”
The Maori Council will reveal within days whether it will take its legal bid to delay the sale of Mighty River Power directly to the Supreme Court or the Court of Appeal after the High Court ruled against it yesterday.

The High Court's Justice Ronald Young comprehensively rejected the Maori Council's case in his judgement released yesterday.

In a three day High Court hearing late last month in Wellington the council argued the Government should establish the extent of Maori ownership rights over freshwater and geothermal resources and make redress for them before the partial sale of Mighty River and other power companies under its "mixed ownership model".

Read More.....


GDC to Take Up Drilling Wells at Geothermal Sites (Business Daily)

Blending with Nature by Abraham Sam Samuel.
Rig with rainbow in the background, Hells Gate
National Park, Olkaria, Kenya, March 19th, 2011
Investors in geothermal energy in Kenya will be spared much of the upstream costs of production after the Geothermal Development Company (GDC) extended its role to drilling.

GDC Managing Director Silas Simiyu said investors will henceforth only be required to raise capital for building power stations, in a change of tack aimed at reducing the cost of exploiting steam as a source of energy.

GDC will henceforth carry out service exploration and exploitation of steam resource as well as drilling, leaving public sector power generator KenGen to compete with private investors for licences to build power stations.

The change follows failure by licensed companies to drill and prove availability of steam as per contractual terms. Following the change, licences held by KenGen for wells with a potential of 280 MWe in Olkaria will run on a revenue-sharing basis.

Read More.....


Kenyan Geothermal Firm Unveils Plan to Sell Carbon Credits (Standard Media)

Geothermal Development Company (GDC) is looking to generate revenue from its planned geothermal project in Menengai by selling carbon credits.

The company yesterday said it is working on modalities of registering the Menengai Geothermal Project under the Clean Development Mechanism of the Kyoto Protocol, which is under the aegis of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Successful registration of the proposed 400 MWe project could prove a significant revenue stream for the state-funded GDC.

Under the Kyoto Protocol, heavy polluters that exceed their emission levels can buy credits from companies implementing projects that help in absorption of harmful gases from the environment.

The degree of pollution is measured by the amount of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that a company emits. Geothermal electricity generating projects are among those that seen as green, in that they do not harmful gases into the environment.

Read More.....


Financing Guaranteed for Geothermal Project in Sulawesi (ThinkGeoEnergy)

PT Indonesia Infrastructure Finance (IIF) will soon provide assistance for the construction of a geothermal power plant (PLTP) in Central Sulawesi, following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), with the Sulawesi provincial government, to guarantee the utilization of the geothermal funding facility (FDG).

The project itself, will be built in Sigi and the Central Sulawesi town of Palu. The project is being developed under a public private partnership, and therefore assistance is provided to secure funds through FDG.

Read More.....

New Zealand:

Construction of Te Mihi Geothermal Power Plant Reaches Half Way Mark (

Contact Energy Limited's (Waikato, New Zealand) 166 MWe Te Mihi Geothermal Power Station has reached the halfway point in its construction phase and has a completion target of August 2013.

The geothermal plant is being built in the Te Mihi area of the Wairakei Geothermal Steam Field, which is north of Taupo, Waikato, in New Zealand.


Laser Drills Could Relight Geothermal Energy Dreams (New Scientist)

From fossil fuels to geothermal heat, accessing the planet's energy riches usually involves boring deep into the Earth with giant metal drills. But could lasers do the same job?

Foro Energy, a start-up company in Littleton, Colorado, has developed what it claims is an inexpensive system of high-powered lasers that can rip through rock, potentially revolutionizing drilling and hastening the adoption of greener forms of power.

Foro announced last month that a test system had sent a beam from a 20-kilowatt commercial laser through 1.5 kilometers of optical fiber.  Development has been funded by the U.S. Department of Energy's research arm, ARPA-E. Borehole drilling trials are planned for next year.

Read More....


Chevron Geothermal in Philippines Sells to Local Company (Manila Standard Today)

SM Investments Corp., the holding company of the SM Group of Companies, acquired a 60-percent stake in a geothermal unit owned by Chevron Corp., an executive of SM Investments said Wednesday night.

SM Investments purchased the majority of Philippine Geothermal Production Co., the wholly-owned unit of Chevron Geothermal Inc. that was formed to explore and develop geothermal energy sources in the country.

SMIC chief operating officer Jose Sio said Chevron Geothermal Inc. picked SMIC as partner to comply with the  ownership limit requirement of the Philippines Geothermal Law. Chevron will own the balance of 40 percent.

“Chevron is 100 percent owned by U.S. Chevron… There is a law that they have to reduce their ownership from 100 percent to 40,” Sio said.  He declined to provide details on the financial transaction.

Chevron is operating the steam fields of the Tiwi-Makban power geothermal plants in Laguna and Batangas under an agreement with state-owned National Power Corp.

USA, Oregon:

U.S. Geothermal’s Neal Hot Springs Project Update (PDF)(News Release)

Neal Hot Springs project (Courtesy U.S. Geothermal Inc.)
U.S. Geothermal Inc., provides this update on the Neal Hot Springs project located near Vale, Oregon.

The three module plant is operating and currently delivering 23.0 net megawatts  to customer, Idaho Power Company, with the following status of each module unit:
  • Unit 1 is currently online and operational with gross generation of 11.0 MWe;
  • Unit 2 is also online and operational with gross generation of 10.4 MWe; and,
  • Unit 3 currently online and was recently synchronized to the grid. Gross generation from Unit 3 is 8.7 MWe operating in sub critical mode.
The three modules are still undergoing various mechanical and control system adjustments, tests and modifications to meet overall design criteria. The project contractor is expected to complete work during the first quarter of 2013.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Supreme Energy to Start Work on Rajabasa Geothermal Project (ThinkGeoEnergy)

PT Supreme Energy has announced it is preparing to build a five-point access road to enable the start of drilling in early 2013, in the area of Mount Rajabasa, in Lampung province, according to the President and CEO of the company.

Supreme Energy expects to start operation of the plant in 2017, providing a planned power generation capacity of 2×110 MWe and could fuel the complete electricity demand of the province.

Read More......


KenGen Set to Pay Sh580m to Move Families from Olkaria (

The Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) has released details of the planned resettlement of communities at Olkaria set to cost over Sh580 million. The power producer is planning to put up a 140 MWe geothermal plant which is expected to negatively affect the community living in the area through noise and emissions.

The listed corporation says the cash, part of which is expected to come from the World Bank, will be used to construct houses and other amenities for people living on the site where the Olkaria IV power project will be set up.

Read More.....


Global Geothermal Markets Booming - Will the US Get Left Behind? (Power Engineering Magazine)

When speaking to a geothermal advocate, it is likely that they will express a common frustration about the industry: geothermal, unlike wind and solar, is a baseload, guaranteed source of steady power, so why isn't there enough favorable policy in the U.S. to help the industry grow?

During the geothermal policy panel discussion at the Renewable Energy World North America Conference and Expo, co-located with POWER-GEN International, panelists described the scene in the U.S. government and expressed concern over the fact that if something doesn't change, the U.S. geothermal industry might get left behind.


Geothermal Anywhere Among Top 25 in European Venture Contest (ThinkGeoEnergy)

Slovakian company Geothermal Anywhere has been ranked as one of the Top 25 best European high-tech companies at the European Venture Contest 2012. The high tech company based in Bratislava, Slovakia and London, UK, has been developing a concept of a cost effective deep drilling system that could help revolutionize the development of EGS projects.

Read More......

United Kingdom:

Manchester Cathedral To Get a Geothermal Upgrade (Manchester Confidential)

(Courtesy Manchester Confidential)

The 600 year old Manchester Cathedral in northern England will close for 9 months next year to allow for renovations, including a geothermal heating system.

At present the heating of the Cathedral only operates at 15 per cent capacity - the solder on the copper pipes inserted during the post-WWII repairs having failed.

An intriguing aspect of the new work is the geothermal solution. Boreholes will be drilled deep into the earth and the heat from the geology under Manchester, used to provide 80 per cent of the Cathedral's heat.

Read More.....


Pratt & Whitney Sells Turbine Unit to Mitsubishi (San Francisco Gate)

Pratt & Whitney is selling its turbine business in order to better focus more on its core aerospace and commercial businesses.

Terms of the sale of the Power Systems segment to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries were not disclosed Wednesday, but the deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2013.

Pratt & Whitney, subsidiary of United Technologies Corp., applied its airplane engine technology to industrial gas turbines, which use heat from geothermal or other heat sources to vaporize a fluid with a lower boiling point. The vapor creates pressure to power a turbine that generates electricity.

Read More......


Renewable Energy Seeks Tax Credit Extension (Financial Times)

Renewable energy companies are pressing for an extension in the Production Tax Credit (PTC) that is on the chopping block as the negotiations over averting the fiscal cliff continue.

Extending the credit and changing the eligibility requirements would boost alternative energy production and create jobs, according to representatives for the geothermal, hydropower and biomass energy industries.

“The point that we have been trying to make to the White House and Congress is that we are essentially already at the cliff because of the lead times for our projects,” said Karl Gawell, executive director of the U.S. Geothermal Energy Association.

USA, Nevada:

Ram Power Announces Termination of PPA for Clayton Valley Project (News Release)

Ram Power, Corp. announced today that it has terminated its power purchase agreement (PPA) with Nevada Power Company (NV Energy) for the sale of power from its Clayton Valley geothermal power project located in west central Nevada.  The PPA termination will allow the Ram Power to refocus its capital resources on its operating project in San Jacinto, Nicaragua.

Read More.....