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Northernmost territory of Canada exploring opportunity of geothermal energy use

Waterfront of Iqaluit, Nunavut, Canada (source: flickr/ Sebastian Kasten, creative commons)
Alexander Richter 7 Nov 2017

Canada's northernmost territory, Nunavut, is seeking to explore its potential for the utilisation of geothermal energy for heating and power generation.

Earlier this week, we reported on a new Tender announced for a geothermal feasibility study for Nunavut in Canada. Now details are being shared on the ambitions behind it.

Nunatsiaq Online, a local news outlet, reports that Nunavut’s power corporation, Qulliq Energy Corp. is aiming to understand the geothermal potential in the 25 communities of the territories. While it not specifically mentions heat, the RFP is rather broad in that it is is aimed to report “on geothermal opportunities and its direct/indirect application for the territory of Nunavut.” This essentially entails the wider application of geothermal, both for power generation and heating.

The Request for Proposals was issued in October, we reported, is targeting a report that will need to define areas in Nunavut with high geothermal potential and identify ways that power and heat can be generated from stores of energy naturally generated and existing beneath the Earth’s crust.

With geothermal energy the local power company hopes it can reduce operational and maintenance costs.

The goal of the feasibility study is “to plan and provide for Nunavut’s long term needs for affordable energy, taking into consideration Nunavut’s desire to enhance energy self-reliance and to conserve energy and energy resources,” the request for proposals says.

“QEC has an incredible opportunity to expand the territory’s energy resources to include energy especially for off-grid towns and communities who require base load power. As no database for Nunavut has been formed to date, this project would be the first step to advance the geothermal industry and diversify QEC’s resources.”

Northern Vision, a collaboration of Canada’s northern governments, has listed potential possibilities for geothermal development in Yukon and the Northwest Territories—in some cases by using old mine shafts—but notes that no studies have yet been done in Nunavut.

The information collected in the QEC’s report will be made publicly available in the National Geothermal Database.

Interested contractors need to get their proposals in by Nov. 15 and the winning bidder must submit a final report by March 2018.

Source: Nunatsiaq Online