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Power companies crucial in geothermal living up to its potential in NZ

Pipes at Ngatamariki geothermal plant, New Zealand (source: Mighty River Power)
Francisco Rojas 18 Sep 2014

GNS Science senior geothermal scientist Chris Bromley is interviewed by local news and reinforces that NZ could produce nearly all of its energy needs via renewable in the near future.

In a recent interview, Chris Bromley GNS Science senior geothermal scientist said “geothermal energy could be a major contributor to do this earlier than the Government’s target of 2025” since he believes that the country can obtain up to “90 per cent of its power generated from renewable sources by 2020.”

The main issue here is that according to Mr Bromley, in order to achieve this ambitious target, the input from private power companies in NZ is critical, such as Mighty River Power or Contact Energy.

At the moment, with flat increases in demand for electricity consumption, firms are not willing to invest in new projects, especially on large ones that can take offline fossil fuel plants. At the moment, geothermal energy contributed about 18 per cent of the country’s generated power, Mr Bromley said, but his opinion is that the potential is out there.

“Maybe in 50 years’ time our research will be so advanced that we can confidently develop these resources without having any environmental effects at all.”

He cited also Japan, following the nuclear disaster of Fukushima has now started drilling in their national parks for geothermal energy.

“They’re adopting new technology; directional wells. You can drill from outside a protected area and go inside.”

On a final note he stated that he wished that ” with the right investment, geothermal energy will power at least the North Island and possibly even be sold to Australia”

To read the full interview, please follow the link below:

Source: Taranaki News via Stuff Website