1st Student Essay Competition on Geothermal Energy

1st Student Essay Competition on Geothermal Energy Geothermal Competition snapshot of promo
Alexander Richter 10 Sep 2012

The Pacific Centre for Geothermal Education & Research team at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada, announces the opening of the 1st Student Essay Competition on Geothermal Energy with cool prices to win.

The Pacific Centre for Geothermal Education & Research team at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada, is pleased to announce the opening of the 1st Student Essay Competition on Geothermal Energy.

In his 2011 book, “World on the edge: how to prevent environmental and economic collapse”, Lester Brown indicated that the average annual world growth rate in geothermal power production was 3%. However, despite its location on the Pacific Ring of Fire, Canada has yet to commercially develop any geothermal power generation capacity. In contrast, Canadian use of low-grade geothermal energy for heating and cooling has been steadily on the increase in recent years.

The aim of the competition is to engage college and university students from around the world to help identify the immediate steps which need to be taken in order to promote the development of geothermal energy in Canada.

Problem Statement

“What should Canada do within the next 2 years to foster the development of geothermal energy systems, including electricity generation and direct geothermal use (including industrial, agricultural, commercial and domestic applications)?”

Your answer to this question can be approached from a variety of different perspectives, including, but not limited to:

  • Technical
  • Economic
  • Environmental
  • Social
  • Political
  • Public Policy

Submission Process – Stage 1

To enter this competition, participants must submit a vision letter that addresses the above problem statement. The vision letter must not exceed 600 words.
At the end of Stage 1, a lucky participant will be randomly selected to win a brand new iPad tablet.

Submission Process – Stage 2

The highest scoring proposals will be subsequently chosen to compete for a total of $5,000 in cash prizes in Stage 2 of the competition. Stage 2 participants must expand on the ideas presented in their vision letter and provide an answer to the above problem statement in essay format. The essay should not exceed 3000 words, not including references and appendices. Each submission must be accompanied by a completed and signed Competition Registration Form, which can be downloaded here.

Your final submission must be in PDF format and e-mailed to


All entries to the competition must be submitted no later than 23:59 (Pacific Standard Time), on Friday, September 21st, 2012 to Late submissions will not be considered but will become the intellectual property of the University of British Columbia as stated in the Official Contest Rules and Regulations. Competition winners will be notified via e-mail by the end of October 2012.


All full-time and part-time students registered in a university undergraduate or graduate program, as well as all postdoctoral fellows. Students from universities or equivalent post secondary institutions throughout the world are eligible to participate.

Evaluation Criteria

Submissions will be evaluated on the basis of grammar, structure, and content. The evaluation criteria include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Content: Does the submission address the Essay Topic?
  • Grammar: Has the author ensured that the essay is free of spelling, grammar and punctuation mistakes?
  • Structure: Does the essay meet the specified formatting requirements? Are the author’s ideas organized in a logical manner, which flow thematically from one to the next?
  • Clarity: Has the author succeeded in clearly explaining their idea within the six page limit? Have they demonstrated the ability to critically evaluate, analyze and synthesize material in a concise manner that is understandable to the lay reader?
  • Originality: Has the author presented a new idea or an existing idea within a brand new context?
  • Applicability: Can this idea be reasonably implemented, within the next two to three years?

Contest Prizes – Stage 1

In Stage 1 of the competition, a brand new 16GB iPad tablet will be awarded to an eligible participant by random draw.

Contest Prizes – Stage 2

In stage 2 of this competition, a total of $5,000 (Canadian currency) in cash prizes will be awarded!

  • 1st Prize Winners: CAN $2,500.
  • 2nd Prize Winners: CAN $1,500.
  • 3rd Prize Winners: CAN $1,000.

For full competition rules, please click here (pdf).

This competition has been generously supported by the UBC Teaching & Learning Enhancement Fund.

Link: Competition Website