Why is Demand for Geothermal Power Shooting Up Globally?

Why is Demand for Geothermal Power Shooting Up Globally?

Published Jan 3 

With the growing demand for renewable and clean energy, on account of the escalating pollution levels and depletion of fossil fuels, the demand for geothermal energy is rising rapidly across the world. Moreover, due to the increasing focus on energy security and energy independence, many governments are enacting policies for encouraging the adoption of geothermal energy. For instance, the European Union (EU) aims to achieve at least 20% of their power needs with renewable energy sources by 2020, under the Renewable Energy Directive (RED).

Additionally, many countries are taking initiatives such as focusing on launching geothermal energy projects, for reducing their oil imports, which is also fueling the expansion of the geothermal power market. Besides, the burgeoning requirement for reducing the emission of greenhouse gases is also creating lucrative growth opportunities for geothermal power producers across the world. Economies such as Germany, China, Australia, France, Portugal, and Ethiopia are making huge investments in geothermal energy, thereby offering immense opportunities for capacity expansion of geothermal energy plants.

Furthermore, geothermal power has various advantages over other renewable energy sources such as wind, bioenergy, and hydropower such as less requirement for large land areas, high availability, and the ability to cause zero or no liquid pollution because of the re-injection of effluent fluid and low atmospheric pollution. Due to the aforementioned factors, the revenue of the geothermal power market is expected to rise from $3,233.5 million in 2015 to $6,518.9 million by 2022. Furthermore, the market will progress at a CAGR of 11.6% from 2016 to 2022 (forecast period).

Flash, dry steam, and binary are the main technologies used for generating geothermal power. Amongst these, the adoption of the flash technology was found to be the highest in 2015. Geographically, the demand for geothermal power was the highest in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region during the last few years and this trend will continue in the upcoming years as well, as per the estimates of the market research company, P&S Intelligence.

This is credited to the increasing focus of several governments on reducing their reliance on fossil fuels for power generation, burgeoning requirement for meeting the high-power demand by optimizing various renewable sources, and the launch of several projects for exploring the potential of geothermal energy for power production in the region. Energy Development Corporation, Calpine Corporation, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., Alterra Power Corp., Mannvit Engineering, U.S. Geothermal Inc., Cyrq Energy, Ormat Technologies Inc., Contact Energy, and Raya Group are some of the major geothermal power producing companies across the world.

Thus, it can be said with surety that the demand for geothermal power will surge sharply in the coming years, primarily because of the growing requirement for renewable and clean energy, on account of the soaring pollution levels and implementation of stringent environmental protection laws as well as the enactment of supportive policies by the governments of several countries, and the rapid depletion of fossil fuel reserves all over the world.