Mexican Geothermal Association held successful 22nd Annual Congress and Assembly

Mexican Geothermal Association - Group Photo - 22nd Annual Congress and Assembly
Francisco Rojas 30 Mar 2015

The 22nd General Annual Assembly of the AGM took place on 10-11 March 2015 was held in Cuernavaca, Morelos, central Mexico. After the congress a new board for 2015-2017 was also elected.

With 150 attendees, 31 oral presentations and 10 poster presentations, the Mexican Geothermal Association (AGM: Asociación Geotérmica Mexicana) held its 22nd Annual Congress in the facilities of the Mexican electrical research institute (IIE: Instituto de Investigaciones Eléctricas) in Cuernavaca, Morelos, central Mexico, on 10-11 March 2015. The event included an 8-hours pre-congress workshop on Geochemistry for Exploration and Exploitation of Geothermal Resources, developed on 9th March in the same facilities and conducted by IIE’s researcher Dr. Mahendra Pal Verma. There were 31 participants in the workshop, all of them young students and researchers from the engineering and geophysics institutes of the UNAM, the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN), and several interns of the IIE. The workshop fee for 26 of them was fully financed through a grant by the IGA’s Education Committee. The other five paid a reduced fee thanks to the same IGA’s grant.

The congress was inaugurated on 10th March by the IIE’s Executive Director, José Luis Fernández Zayas, who was accompanied in the presidium by Magaly Flores, head of the geothermal division of the Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE), José Manuel Romo, technical responsible of the Mexican Center for Innovation in Geothermal Energy (CeMIE-Geo), and other officials of the IIE, the local government and the President and Vice President of the AGM. Luis C.A. Gutiérrez-Negrín, AGM President, read a salute sent by Juliet Newson, the IGA President, who wished a successful meeting, thanked the new and old AGM board members and recalled the imminent world geothermal congress.

The congress started with four invited conferences presented by Magaly Flores from CFE, Wilfred Elders from the University of California Riverside, José Manuel Romo from the CeMIE-Geo and Juan Luis de Valle from Grupo Dragón, the owner of the first private geothermal project in Mexico located in Domo San Pedro, Nayarit. The latter informed that the first 5MW back-pressure unit had been commissioned a couple of weeks ago, and the second 5MW unit was in pre-operative tests. In addition, a 25MW unit is under construction by Mitsubishi. The remaining technical presentations included exploration, geology, modeling, geochemistry, reservoir engineering, drilling, environmental impacts, drilling techniques, direct uses and scaling, among other geothermal subjects, almost all presented in Spanish. Speakers were a mix of geothermal experts with many years of experience and young engineers and researchers starting in geothermal. Most of them work for the CFE and IIE, and some others for the universities (UNAM, IPN, CICESE) and private companies.

At the end of the first day of the congress, it was developed a short but emotive ceremony where the Pathé Award was delivered to José Luis Hernández Galán, and a special award to Marcelo J. Lippmann. José Luis Hernández is a currently retired mechanical engineer, former head of the Mechanical Engineering Department of the IIE, founder of the AGM and of the IGA, and author of a couple of books on geothermal energy. Marcelo Lippmann is an Argentina-born geologist, retired from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) in 2005 and currently partial-time hired by the LBNL, which is Emeritus Editor of Geothermics. Eduardo Iglesias received the award on behalf of Marcelo.

The 22nd General Annual Assembly of the AGM was held in the same place when the congress finished. Luis C.A. Gutiérrez-Negrín, the outgoing president, presented his formal report on the state of the AGM, stressing that the association is in its best moment along 22 years since the membership and economic resources viewpoints. The new board 2015-2017 was also elected. This board is composed of Georgina Izquierdo (IIE) as the President, Abraham Molina (CFE) as Vice President, Emigdio Casimiro (CFE) as the Secretary and Mirna Tello (CFE) as the Treasurer.

Source: Press Release from the Mexican Geothermal Association