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Myanmar eyeing 200 MW geothermal development in the east of the country

Temples in Myanmar (Burma) (source: flickr/ eGuide Travel, creative commons)
Alexander Richter Alexander Richter 1 Feb 2016

As part of its electricity generation master plan, the country of Mynamar is planning with geothermal, having signed an MOU for the development of up to 200 MW in the East of the country.

In a historic opening of the Myanmar parliament and entering a democratic area after 54 years of military rule, the country of Myanmar (Burma) sees an increase in investor interest and economic development.

With economic development and investment comes an increase in energy demand, so it is not surprising that development of energy projects is a key interest of the new government to be formed.

In news today it is reported about plans for new coal-fired power plants in the South of the country as part of the Myanmar’s electricity generation master plan.

Under the master plan, by 2030 coal will generate 7,940 megawatts or 33 per cent of installed capacity of 23,594MW, from 2 per cent at present from two coal-fired power plants – one with 120MW in Shan State and the other with 8MW in Tanintharyi Region.

But despite plans for coal fired plants, there are also some news on renewable energy projects.

The Japan Investment Cooperation Agency, which has played a part in drafting the master plan, forecasts that Myanmar’s electricity demand could hit 14,542MW in 2030.

Tint Lwin Oo, deputy director for Myanmar’s hydro and renewable planning, added that foreign investors could do business in the energy sector by means of either joint ventures or as BOT (build, operate and transfer) schemes.

He added that the ministry had signed a memorandum of understanding, with different firms, to implement three solar-power projects with a total installed capacity of 550MW, three wind-power projects with a combined installed capacity of 2,380MW, and a 200MW geothermal project.

 

The geothermal plant could supply needed electricity to the eastern part of the country.

There are at least 39 locations already marked by the Myanmar Engineering Society capable of geothermal power production and some of these hydrothermal reservoirs lie quite close to Yangon which is a significant underutilized resource. Preliminary investigations had been made on 43 locations in 1986 by Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE). Additionally in 1990 UNOCAL in cooperation with (MOGE) conducted analysis of geothermal data from sampling of 15 hot spring surface discharges of 57°C or higher. (details on the potential of geothermal use in Myanmar can be found here.)

Source: Nation MultiMedia