International roundup: Geothermal in California, Montana, Chile, Dominica and more

This post brings you geothermal headlines from California, Montana, Chile, Dominica, Mexico, Kenya, Indonesia and New Zealand.


Click below to read this week’s international geothermal roundup.

U.S. States

*California: Senator Mike Thompson Supports Geothermal
U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA) responded to the California State Senate’s passing of the resolution marking May 2015 as Geothermal Awareness Month and May 21 as Geothermal Awareness Day. “Geothermal energy embodies several unique traits, including low integration costs, a small land footprint, and most important, a predictable, consistent and adaptable source of energy production that can accommodate the needs of power grids,” said Thompson. “It is not dependent on the weather, season or time of day, and provides a dependable source of base load power. It supports thousands of jobs across our district and state, and provides counties with important royalty payments which they depend to provide public services. I applaud Senators McGuire and Hueso for passing their resolution recognizing the importance of geothermal energy.”

*Montana: Geothermal Can Expand Energy Portfolio and Create Local Jobs
In a statement to press, Montana Senator Jon Tester talked about his home state Montana in relation to his geothermal bill that would set a goal of 50,000 MW of geothermal energy by 2025. Tester stated, “Montana’s public lands contain some of the best renewable energy sources in the world, and we should be leading the nation to increase our energy independence and reduce the amount of carbon we put into the atmosphere. Developing Montana’s geothermal resources will expand our energy portfolio and create good-paying jobs that can’t be outsourced.”

The Americas

*Chile: Mariposa Drilling Scheduled This Winter
Alterra Power Corp. Chairman Ross Beaty shared an update on the Mariposa project in an interview on He said, “Mariposa is a large-scale geothermal electricity project in Chile which will be undergoing large-diameter drilling this coming winter. If the drilling program is successful and identifies a high-temperature resource there it would take another couple of years for development of an initial, say, 50 megawatt operation but that could be the tip of the iceberg if the system is as big as we think it might be. It’s a great looking project, well run by our partners EDC, but the proof will be in the drilling this winter. Finger’s crossed!”

*Dominica: DOMLEC to Distribute Geothermal Power
Dominica’s Hon. Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit told press Dominica’s electricity company, DOMLEC, will be involved in the distribution from the nation’s geothermal project. “This is important even before commencing the construction of the geothermal plant,” he said. “The Geothermal Bill has been approved by the Ministry of Energy and the Attorney-General’s office.”

*Mexico: Geothermal Concessions to be Auctioned
The first auction of geothermal power concessions in Mexico is expected this August. The government will determine in July which concessions will go to National utility Comision Federal de Electricidad (CFE) and the remaining concessions will be put to auction. The government will also consider private requests for other geothermal fields apart from the auction.


*Kenya: Africa Utilities Present Award for Olkaria Geothermal
Africa Utilities have given an award to KenGen for their Olkaria Geothermal project. Along with “Clean Energy Project of the Year,” the Kenyan geothermal company also won a second award, “Africa Power Utility of the Year.”

Asia and the Pacific

*Indonesia: West Sumatra Geothermal Replacing Fossil Fuels
PT Supreme Energy in South Solok will supply 250 MW of power from geothermal and 125 MW from its mini hydro power plants. The West Sumatra administration is looking for the clean energy by 2019 and is in line with its plan to replace diesel and coal energy. An agency rep told press three other geothermal working areas are in the tender process: Bukit Kili and Gunung Talang (potential 83 MW and 35 MW), both in Solok regency; and Bonjol (potential 200 MW) in Pasaman regency.

*New Zealand: Mighty River Appoints New GM Geothermal
A new geothermal-focused role at Mighty River Power will be filled by Nick Clarke. The new GM Geothermal will focus on optimizing the performance of the five geothermal plants operated by the Company in New Zealand, the company told press.

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