According to the assessment, the number of countries producing power from geothermal resources could increase 120 percent, from 21 countries in 2000 to as many as 46 countries in 2010. Total geothermal capacity online could increase more than 55 percent, from 8661 MW in 2000 to 13,500 MW or more in 2010. The report states, “The trends in both the number of new countries developing geothermal energy and the total of new megawatts of power capacity under development reverse slowdowns in international markets seen in the late 1990s, and approximate trends seen in the more robust 1980s.”
Reports examining the international status of geothermal development were published by the GEA and the International Geothermal Association (IGA) in 2005. While additional detailed reports are expected for the next World Geothermal Congress (WGC), this interim report examines the progress in international geothermal power development since 2005, GEA explains. The new Interim Report notes projects under development, major political and/or policy initiative related to development, and plans announced by either governments or in-country parties.
The report notes that, “in numerous cases, the success of development in a country is linked to government policies and initiatives. The extent of future geothermal project development depends more upon adequate funding and sustained policy support than geologic factors.” The report is available on-line at www.geo-energy.org/publications/reports.asp, or email email@example.com to request a copy.
Highlights of the report:
- The World Bank is expected to approve funding for the ARGeo project in November – a Risk Mitigation Fund of $17.75 million. This fund is key to the development of potentially thousands of megawatts of new geothermal power in Kenya, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda.
- Australia is aggressively pursuing Hot Dry Rock (HDR) geothermal technology with currently five different projects underway.
- Germany is looking at more than 100 sites of geothermal potential, and is looking to have as much as 200 MW online in several years.
- Iceland has doubled its geothermal power capacity since 2005 to meet growing industrial and commercial demand, particularly businesses looking for green energy and stable prices. Indonesia’s aggressive geothermal program is regaining steam, and with several new developments now underway is expected to achieve 2,000 MW of capacity online by 2010.
- The United States continues to be the world leader in online capacity of geothermal energy and the generation of electric power from geothermal energy. A new wave of geothermal development is underway, propelled by Congress enacting in 2005 a new federal tax incentives (the production tax credit) for geothermal energy. U.S. geothermal power capacity is expected to nearly double in the next few years.
- Armenia, Canada, Chile, Djibouti, Dominica, Greece, Honduras, Hungary, India, Iran, Korea, Nevis, Rwanda, Slovakia, Solomon Islands, St. Lucia, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Uganda, Vietnam, and Yemen all are countries now looking at geothermal development that could be producing geothermal power for the first time in the coming years.
Countries Generating Geothermal Power in 2000
Australia, China, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Ethiopia, France (Guadeloupe), Guatemala, Iceland, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Philippines, Portugal (Azores), Russia, Thailand, Turkey, United States
Countries Adding Power Generation by 2005
Austria, Germany, Papua New Guinea
Potential New Countries by 2010 – Based upon 2007 Interim Survey
Armenia, Canada, Chile, Djibouti, Dominica, Greece, Honduras, Hungary, India, Iran, Korea, Nevis, Rwanda, Slovakia, Solomon Islands, St. Lucia, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Uganda, Vietnam, Yemen