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Drilling for Corbetti and Tulu Moye to start September 2019

Project site for the Corbetti Geothermal project, Ethiopia (source: ThinkGeoEnergy, creative commons)
Alexander Richter 2 Jun 2019

The developer of the Corbetti and Tulu Moye geothermal projects in Ethiopia expect a start of exploration drilling in September 2019, according to Reykjavik Geothermal.

News this week report from the planned geothermal projects of Corbetti and Tulu Moye in Ethiopia.

As reported, the developers are now preparing to start exploration drilling in September 2019, for the two projects that could in the end be built out to two 500 MW projects.

At this full-scale, each of the project could become the largest IPP in Africa, according to Reykjavik Geothermal.

“All the results from the surface exploration work indicate that we are developing projects in a huge caldera, huge active volcanoes which can sustain at least 1,000 megawatts or more,” Gunnar Orn Gunnarsson, RG’s chief operating officer, said in an interview with Bloomberg

With the initial development of 50 to 65 MW, the required equity investment for each is about $175 million. Funding for this stage of development has been fully funded, with RG holding a significant minority stake in both projects.

Total investment for the two 500 MW projects would be around $4.4 billion, with 75% of that to be debt funding. Other owners in the projects include Africa Renewable Energy Fund, Iceland Drilling Co. and Meridiam SAS.

RG is now negotiating drilling contracts after getting everything in place with the government, according to Gunnarsson. The projects have been in the works since 2010, through three prime ministers.

“Our relationship with the government has always been very positive and the current government is very supportive,” he said. “They have shown, in particularly over the last year, that they want this to happen and now we have cleared the pathway to go to exploration drilling.”

Source: New Business Ethiopia