At the Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) Expo in Las Vegas last week, industry optimism was high due to sustained growth in the global market, despite lagging US markets.
GEA’s optimism was underscored by release of a GEA report identifying over 700 geothermal projects under development worldwide. The report estimated that projects in the pipeline would more than double current worldwide capacity from the 12,000 MW expected to be on-line by year’s end, and beyond that developers are actively engaged with 27,000 MW of geothermal resource globally. In the US, GEA pointed out that as the percentage of electricity produced from intermittent sources increases, the stress on an aging power system designed for fossil fuels encourages geothermal’s continuing role as an important part of the power supply mix.
At the event, GEA also held its annual members meeting and elected a new president – Craig Mataczynski, president and CEO of Gradient Resources. Speaking at the Expo, Mataczynski laid out a new vision for the industry “to contribute in excess of 5 percent of the electric energy needs in the United States and globally.
In other news, AGRION, a business network for energy and cleantech professionals, will hold meetings Tuesday, October 15th in New York City to generate a framework for net zero energy buildings for an urban commercial marketplace. Presenting at the meeting will be Skanska, having constructed Norway’s first net positive building. AGRION aims to facilitate consumer, contractor, builder, and architect education on why net zero/positive buildings are a cost effective way to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions. In May, AGRION launched its Zero Net Energy Buildings Task Force to overcome the barriers to net zero energy building development and implementation.
Michael Rovito, senior consultant at ERS, notes that “8 out of the 10 most commonly appearing features in Net Zero Energy buildings are load reducing features that either have no or negative costs.”