“Weekly news roundup for international geothermal markets”
This week’s international roundup brings you headlines from Colorado, Washington, Canary Islands, Kenya, Tanzania, Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Australia, Indonesia, New Zealand, and Armenia.
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*Colorado: Rep. Polis Tours Geo Facility
U.S. Rep. Jared Polis toured a geothermal facility this week, according to coloradoan.com.
*Washington: Pacific Lutheran Seeks Geosciences Professor
The Department of Geosciences at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington is looking for an Assistant Professor of Geosciences for Hydrogeology. More information is on our Community Notice Board.
*Canary Islands Trade Mission a Gateway to West Africa
The Virginia/DC District Export Council is organizing an Energy and Environmental Technologies Trade Mission to the Canary Islands this November. The Trade Mission has been certified by the U.S. Department of Commerce. High-level government decision-makers from six West African countries are expected to be associated with related events, including representatives from Morocco, Ghana, Equatorial Guinea, Senegal, Mauritania and Cape Verde. More information is on our Community Notice Board.
*Kenya: Olkaria, Menengai Developments Ongoing
This week Oxford Business Group ran an article on geothermal in Kenya. “Expansion of Ormat’s plant at Olkaria, located in the Great Rift Valley, is ongoing while tenders for the first phase of the plant in Menengai – with the potential to provide as much as 400 MW when completed – have been awarded to three firms,” the article states. Developers are looking at operations by the end of 2015.
*Tanzania: Geothermal Company Formed
The Tanzania Geothermal Development Company, formed by the government as a subsidiary of Tanzania Electric Supply Company (Tanesco), started operations last month (July 2014). “The company started in July by exploring sites where production can start but Lake Ngozi in Mbeya has so far identified as a suitable to start generation,” Energy and Minerals Minister, Professor Sospeter Muhongo told press. “However, generation through geothermal unlike other sources is done in phases so we should not expect to have the 4,000 plus megawatts overnight.”
*Caribbean Isles Ideal for Geothermal
In the Caribbean, ideal geothermal conditions are resulting in geothermal projects on several islands: Nevis, St. Vincent, Dominica, and Montserrat, to name a few, and Guadeloupe is the sole Caribbean island that already uses geothermal. [ozy.com]
*Bolivia: Energy Minister Updates Sol de Mañana and Laguna Colorada Projects
Submitted by Marcelo Lippmann–In a press conference, Bolivia’s Minister of Hydrocarbons and Energy, Juan José Sosa Soruco, stated that the Government is pursuing several electric power generation projects based on renewable energy sources, including geothermal. He announced that the first production-size well at the Sol de Mañana geothermal field will be drilled this year. Additional wells are planned that would supply steam to the Laguna Colorada 50-MW power plant, which is expected to be on line in 2019; total investment: 216 million dollars. Its capacity is expect to eventually reach 100 MW. As mentioned in the July 9, 2014 issue of this newsletter, the Government of Bolivia has signed an agreement with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to build the Laguna Colorada geothermal plant; JICA will invest 25 million dollars in the project. In addition to the plant, a substation and a transmission line connecting to the San Cristobal, Bolivia’s largest silver mine, will also be built. [www2.hidrocarburos.gob.bo and www.bnamericas.com]
*Colombia: Isagen Considers 50-MW Caldas Project
Isagen SA of Colombia is looking into the possibility of a geothermal project as part of the portfolio in its pipelines. The company, known for its hydropower, is considering a 50-MW geothermal project in Caldas department. [Bloomberg]
*Costa Rica: President Meets with Japan Reps
President Luis Guillermo Solís of Costa Rica was set to meet this week with representatives of the Japanese government on the topic of funding geothermal energy in the country. Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) President Akihiko Tanaka was preparing to sign a $550 million loan for three plants in Guanacaste. Pailas II and Borinquen I and II are each planned at 55 MW capacity. Guanacaste planners expect to see construction in 2018. [ticotimes.net; costaricatimes.com]
Asia and the Pacific
*Australia: RE Target Important for Green Buildings
This week the Green Building Council of Australia’s (GBCA’s) Chief Operating Officer, Robin Mellon, called on the government to recommit to the Renewable Energy Target (RET). “The Renewable Energy Target has stimulated innovation, set a direction for industry and provided the impetus to invest in new technologies,” Mellon said, naming geothermal energy as a green technology that offers advantages for use in Australia’s buildings. [sourceable.net]
*Indonesia: Yokogawa Supplies Geothermal Control System
Yokogawa Electric has been chosen to supply the control system for Unit 5 of the Kamojang geothermal power station in Garut, Indonesia. Yokogawa has supplied 10 other such systems for geothermal in Indonesia, including for Kamojang Unit 4 (automationworld.com). Meanwhile, an article on rakatateam.com names some of the barriers to geothermal development in Indonesia; timeline, protected forests, economics, and regulations are cited as main constraints.
*New Zealand: Tauhara Project Delayed
Contact Energy may hold off for “a few years” on building the Tauhara geothermal steamfield, north-east of Taupo, due to decreased energy demand. [radionz.co.nz]
Europe and Central Asia
*Armenia: World Bank Issues Procurement Notice
The Republic of Armenia has applied for a US$300,000 Preparation Grant from the World Bank’s Climate Investment Funds Scaling-up Renewable Energy Program in Low Income Countries. The project (Project ID: P152039) will include: (i) Preparation of Environmental and social impact assessment for the project; (ii) Preparation of resettlement policy framework for the project; (iii) Design for construction.