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Better policies needed to utilize great potential of geothermal

Tatio Geyser near San Pedro, Chile (source: flickr/ palegoldenrod, creative commons)
Alexander Richter 18 Dec 2012

Speakers at a recent geothermal conference in the Philippines, talked about common problems for investors and developers in South America and Asia, namely for better investment support and policies that supports development of geothermal projects.

At the recently held World Geothermal Energy Summit in Manila, Philippines, speakers were in agreement that despite the great potential of geothermal energy resources in Asia and South Amnerica, better regulations and infrastructures are needed to “facilitate full, profitable and beneficial geothermal energy” contribution to the local energy markets.

Speakers came from South America, the Philippines and Indonesia, but also Japan and other parts of the world.

For the Philippines, Manueal S. Ogena, VP at EDC, says that Indonesia, Chile and Peru have seen a somewhat faster movement on geothermal development, as there still is an “absence of a sound geothermal regulatory framework” in the country.

The overall theme is pretty much the same for all speakers from whatever country they are from. This includes issues of development in protected areas, such as national parks or protected forests (e.g. for Indonesia and Japan), but also real incentives and security for investors.

This includes openness to foreign investment into the energy sectors of the region (and beyond), but also the availability and quality of data that is available, even “for areas that are already identified as geothermal prospects.”

Mentioned are the activities of EDC in Peru and Chile, and the harsh topography and climate conditions in those countries, which have made it difficult for EDC’s technical teams to progress with exploration activities.

Source: Business World Online