Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Canada: Opportunities for Geothermal Collaboration with Oil & Gas Sector

Unlikely allies in the oil patch (Corporate Knights)

How a renewable energy warrior and an oil patch entrepreneur met in the radical middle to go beyond polarizing narratives

Geothermal Drilling, by Vilhjálmur Guðmundsson, Reykjavik, Iceland. Honorable Mention 2019 GRC Geothermal Photo Contest.
In many respects, these two people ( including Alison Thompson, president and CEO of Borealis GeoPower and chair of the Canadian Geothermal Energy Association - CanGEA.  embody the two competing visions at play in Canada’s energy future.

The first is the business-as-usual vision. Our economy and many jobs depend on oil and gas. Global demand for energy is going up. We’ve got decades to come as oil and gas producers and we should maximize the economic benefits and stay competitive in this industry. And, by the way, we’re far safer and more ethical than most other oil producers.

The second vision is climate driven. We must limit global warming to two degrees or less. This  should guide our energy policy and investment priorities. New technology is available and increasingly competitive. Long term investment in fossil fuels locks us into the other vision and sets us on a more difficult path to emissions reduction.

Can these two visions be reconciled? Can we find common ground between oil as dirty and unsustainable and oil as our economic lifeblood?