BP review, IEA report, RE insurance spending, National Academies video, GHP future, GHP revenues

A BP review looks at global geothermal growth. IEA reports globally on all renewables. Another report looks at potential insurance costs rising for renewable industries. National Academies release a video on “Energy Technologies and Manmade Earthquakes.” Geothermal Heat Pumps are another crucial technology for the energy future. In fact, GHPs could surpass $17 billion annually by 2020.

Geothermal Growing Globally, BP Review Shows
IEA Releases Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report 2013
Renewable Energy Industry May Spend Three Times as Much on Insurance Annually by 2020
National Academies Release Video on “Energy Technologies and Manmade Earthquakes”
GHPs Crucial to Efficient Energy Future, says GEO
Geothermal Heat Pumps Could Surpass $17B Annually by 2020

Geothermal Growing Globally, BP Review Shows
The recently released 2013 BP Statistical Review of World Energy (get PDF) shows that global energy consumption slowed in 2012, though renewables in power generation grew by 15%. The review has been published for 62 years. While the document has only one solid mention of geothermal, lumping renewables together, an article on Energytrendsinsider.com delves into the data, supplementing with data from REN21′s recently-released 2013 Renewables Global Status Report: “In 2012, at least 78 countries used geothermal directly for energy. Over two-thirds of the geothermal energy for direct use was through geothermal heat pumps. 24 countries operated geothermal plants for electricity production. Total geothermal electricity capacity was 11.7 GW at the end of 2012. Capacity was led by the U.S. with 3.4 GW of capacity, followed by the Philippines at 1.9 GW, Indonesia at 1.3 GW, Mexico at 1.0 GW, and Italy at 0.9 GW. On a per capita basis, Iceland leads the world with 0.7 GW of capacity, which accounted for 30% of the country’s electricity in 2012.”

IEA Releases Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report 2013
Becky Little, GEA staff — This year’s Renewable Energy Medium-Term Market Report from the International Energy Agency concluded that renewable energy experienced strong growth worldwide in 2012. Despite this growth, global investment in renewable energy actually decreased in 2012. The report argues that this decrease in investment was due to “policy uncertainties, economic challenges, incentive reductions and competition from other energy sources.” The report predicts that the renewable energy market will continue to grow, but that it will require the right market and policy developments to do so.

According to the report, total renewable electricity generation grew 8.2% from 2011 to 2012, with geothermal energy experiencing more moderate growth. Although renewable resources like geothermal energy are growing more competitive, levelized costs generally remain higher for renewables compared to fossil fuels. Because of this, the report argues that market and policy frameworks that provide incentives for renewable resources will help to drive future markets.

The report predicts that non-OECD countries, especially China, will drive future renewable energy markets. Although OECD markets will continue to grow, the report predicts that European and North and South American OECD markets will not grow as robustly as non-OECD markets in Asia and Africa. Of the OECD countries, Europe is expected to see the most market growth in the next five years.

According to the report, renewable power capacity in the OECD Americas should rise by over 100 GW between 2012 and 2018. The combination of the United States’ large market size and economic attractiveness should also spur strong development in renewable resources such as geothermal energy. However, the stability of federal incentives in the U.S. remains a key uncertainty for U.S. renewable resource development.

Overall, renewable resources like geothermal energy are playing an increasing role in final energy use for heat. The report predicts that China and the European Union will experience the most growth in renewable energy used to supply heat and electricity in the next five years. Iea.org (PDF)

Renewable Energy Industry May Spend Three Times as Much on Insurance Annually by 2020
By Sustainable Energy Coalition, source: Bnef.com — The renewable energy industry could be spending three times as much on insurance every year by 2020 to mitigate risks to projects, says a new report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance and commissioned by Swiss Re. The report looked at six of the world’s leading markets for solar and wind, namely Australia, China, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. Depending on the scenario, insurance premium volumes in these markets could increase from $850m today to anywhere between $1.5bn and $2.8bn by the end of this decade. Drivers of increased demand include growing industry scale, but also the trend to more difficult offshore wind environments and interest in the sector from more risk-averse investor groups.

National Academies Release Video on “Energy Technologies and Manmade Earthquakes”
A new video “Energy Technologies and Manmade Earthquakes: What’s the Connection?” has been created by the National Academies to accompany the report, “Induced Seismicity Potential in Energy Technologies.” The video can be viewed on the National Academies YouTube channel. The video was supported by the Department of Energy as part of the continuing dissemination effort for the report.

GHPs Crucial to Efficient Energy Future, says GEO
An editorial from the Geothermal Exchange Organization, the national trade organization for the U.S. geothermal heat pump industry, says “a more efficient energy future MUST include a framework for geothermal heat pumps (GHPs) and their production of renewable thermal energy from the ground beneath our feet.” Dougherty cites research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory showing a cost savings of approximately 50% when comparing widespread GHP installations and construction of power plants on an equivalent energy basis. GHPs also aid summer power peaks and build winter load.

President and CEO Douglas A. Dougherty writes, “GEO believes that the desire for a larger market system to capture energy efficiencies at a higher level must include GHPs. As a DSM measure they offer a high level of truly attainable and more cost effective savings compared to building new generation facilities.” Geoexchange.org

Geothermal Heat Pumps Could Surpass $17B Annually by 2020
A new report from Navigant Research forecasts worldwide revenue from geothermal heat pump (GHP) systems will grow from $6.5 billion in 2013 to $17.2 billion annually by 2020. The report considers global GHP markets, demand drivers, existing and emerging technologies, public policies and regulations, and key players. “The global economic downturn, which slowed construction, reduced government investments in cleantech products, and limited the ability of developers to acquire capital for high-end construction products, has taken a toll on manufacturers of GHP products,” Mackinnon Lawrence, principal research analyst with Navigant Research was quoted on Navigantresearch.com. “However, the market stands to experience strong growth in the coming years, as government policies create incentives for the use of energy efficiency resources and manufacturers reduce the upfront cost of GHP installations.”

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