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New geothermal map highlights potential for Victoria, Australia

Victoria geothermal heat map at 1,500m depth (source: Sustainability Victoria/ SKM)
Alexander Richter 16 Jul 2010

The Australian state of Victoria has launched a comprehensive map that highlights the state's potential for the utilization of geothermal resources for electricity generation.

The Australian state of Victoria has launched a comprehensive map that highlights the state’s potential for the utilization of geothermal resources for electricity generation.

‘The map has been created from measurements of the natural geothermal heat flowing through the ground at over 100 different sites across much of southern and north-western Victoria – this is over ten times the number of sites that had previously been published,’ said Minister for Energy and Resources, Peter Batchelor

The new heatflow map highlights the state’s north and west regions as the most promising areas for geothermal energy production, showimg that large parts of Victoria have high heat flow values as high as those found in South Australia, which has attracted much geothermal exploration activity.

Batchelor said the geothermal atlas showed there was high heat flow in an area bordered by Stawell, Horsham, Ouyen and Mildura, as well as an area from north-west of Melbourne to Castlemaine and Ballarat.

‘This new map is designed to attract and drive investment in geothermal energy production,’ he said.

Most of the new data was collected by taking advantage of the existing network of groundwater. Over the last year, government geologists took new measurements from bores throughout the Murray and Wimmera areas, around towns including Mildura and Echuca, along the southern coast near towns such as Portland and Colac, and in the Latrobe Valley area of Gippsland.

The Brumby Labor Government allocated $500,000 to develop the atlas, with GeoScience Victoria leading a large collaborative effort across government, academia and industry.

Until now, most geothermal energy data in Victoria has been compiled from temperature data collected during previous petroleum drilling, with data missing for large sections of the state.”

Source: New Energy World Network

Full detail report on geothermal activities and updates from Victoria, includes petroleum, carbon storage, but also details on geothermal projects and companies (5Mb pdf document)

There is also a good introduction to geothermal resources in the state of Victoria from 2006 at Sustainability Victoria