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Where does geothermal play a key role in the national energy mix?

Ranking based on share of geothermal in total electricity generation, GWh (source: ThinkGeoEnergy)
Alexander Richter Alexander Richter 27 May 2019

In this overview we show the ranking of countries based on the share of geothermal energy in the overall electricity generation of the country.

Reporting on geothermal energy development worldwide on a daily basis, I struggle finding the time to do some of the research I am so keen on developing.

At the moment, I am working on an online version of our extensive database of geothermal power plants, projects in development and companies. This will include a much overdue update to our power plant map and descriptions of the geothermal plants operating in the world. More on this in a follow up article in the coming weeks.

Last week, our friends at Heatpower.com shared some data from us on the development of geothermal power generation capacity, which created a series of questions on LinkedIn. This sparked in me looking into further details on showing what role geothermal energy can play.

Starting with I looked into geothermal vs. capita (population), then installed capacity in % of total installed capacity. But clearly this was only a start, as it become obvious that it comes down to the electricity generated in comparison to total electricity production. To gather the data was not easy and some of the data used is up to two years older than the data used for other countries. But the result of this little study is interesting as it provides a different outlook on how important geothermal energy is in certain countries.

It shows that geothermal energy is an elementary part of the energy mix in Kenya, El Salvador, Iceland, New Zealand, and Nicaragua. In Kenya alone, geothermal energy sometimes provides more than 50% of the electricity on a monthly basis compared to only 30% of the installed capacity, showing the crucial role in providing secure baseload electricity to the country.

The countries that are likely surprising in this context are El Salvador, Nicaragua and the Philippines.

I expect to share a few more details from our study in the coming weeks.