June 2024: Epic Energy Demands of Foundational Innovations

In the midst of rapid technological advancements, one truth has emerged as an iron law of our universe: foundational innovations, when adopted at scale, invariably lead to a massive surge in energy consumption, according to an article by Mark P. Mills, executive director of the National Center on Energy Analytics. The reality is starkly evident as the world navigates three foundational innovations: the increase in electric vehicles (EVs), repatriated manufacturing (e.g., restoring semiconductor development in the U.S.) , and the explosive growth of artificial intelligence (AI). The article “The ‘Energy Transition’ Won’t Happen” describes the epic increase in energy consumption driven by these three innovations. As the world strives for a more sustainable future, understanding and addressing the energy demands of these innovations is crucial. Read the summary of the article.

In another article, the AI boom will overload global power grids as the surge in power consumption will surpass supply capabilities. Projections by Goldman Sachs indicate that data centers could consume up to 8 percent of the United States’ total electricity by 2030, compared to 3% in 2022. This surge translates to emissions equivalent to 15.7 million additional gas-powered vehicles, underscoring the urgent necessity for sustainable power sources.

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Our view of the industry

Asia

In Indonesia, Pertamina New & Renewable Energy (Pertamina NRE), a subsidiary of state-owned energy company Pertamina, has set a target of 6 GW of installed capacity of clean energy-based power plant development by 2029. Pertamina Geothermal Energy (a subsidiary of Pertamina NRE) and PLN have signed an agreement to jointly develop binary power plants in the existing Ulubulu and Lahendong sites in Indonesia.

Also in Indonesia, the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation has committed $126 million funding to Medco Cahaya Geothermal for the Ijen geothermal project.

Mahanagdong geothermal plant, Leyte, Philippines (courtesy of EDC)

In the Philippines, Energy Development Corporation (EDC) has 82 MW of geothermal power generation projects in the pipeline, all set to begin operations this year. GreenFire Energy has a project with EDC to augment steam production using idle wells.

Geothermal heat is seen as the perfect energy source for Korea, where the underground temperature is always constant regardless of the season.

In Japan, Kyuden Mirai Energy, a subsidiary of Kyushu Electric Power, will begin construction of a 5 MW geothermal power plant in Kirishima, Kagoshima.

Also in Japan, INPEX has announced plans for conducting exploration drilling for geothermal resources in the town of Shibetsu in Hokkaido.

Europe

Paris 2024 Olympic Village
Paris 2024 Olympic Village

The Paris 2024 Olympics aim to be the most responsible and sustainable games. The Olympic Village was ‘built to last’ with the 82 buildings to be converted into office space for 6000 workers and apartments to house another 6000 people after the games end. The apartments use geothermal cooling instead of air conditioning which takes water cooled to 4 degrees Celsius (39 F) from wells at a nearby geothermal plant and transports the water through pipes under the floors of each apartment. Read about Paris’ landmark Olympic Village.

The European Parliament overwhelmingly voted in favor of a new European geothermal strategy which  will action the European Commission to reduce administrative burdens and de-risk investment. Download the latest European Geothermal Transition Outlook Report 2024.

In Germany, utility company EnBW and lithium specialist LevertonHELM announced the production of battery-grade lithium from the Bruchsal geothermal site.

In the Netherlands, a geothermal research project has been able to continue research following the installation of an ultra-low emission microgrid from Aggreko, a solutions provider.

In the U.K., the Net Zero Technology Centre (NZTC), Durham University, SHIFT Geothermal, and The Reece Foundation have announced the launch of the UK National Geothermal Centre (NGC) which will champion the integration of geothermal energy into the future renewable energy mix.

Geothermal energy is a priority in Hungary  given its “key role in ensuring energy autonomy and security” and meeting climate goals. 

In Poland, the drilling of a deep geothermal well in Zyrardow has been completed, bringing the town one step closer to a planned geothermal heating network.

To support energy security in Ukraine, Enovate AI, which specializes in digital solutions, has partnered with Geothermal Ukraine, a nonprofit researching the integrated harvesting of geothermal resources, to repurpose old, Soviet-era oil and gas wells to become sources of geothermal energy.

Africa

KenGen’s Olkaria Geothermal Field. Photo courtesy of KenGen.

In Kenya, Microsoft and G42, an artificial intelligence firm from the UAE, have unveiled plans to build a $1 billion geothermal-powered data center. This is another example of AI driving explosive growth in data centers. Also, the United States Department of Energy has revealed investment plans for Kenya’s green energy transition, focusing on e-mobility and the clean power generation sector. Separately, GreenFire Energy announced its collaboration with Kenya Electricity Generating Company in the Olkaria region.

In Uganda, the Ministry of Energy announced that it is set to start generating electricity from four out of 27 identified locations that are now ready. The sites are: Kibiro in Hoima Distsrict; Buranga in Bundibugyo District; Katwe in Kasese District; and, Panyimur in the Pakwach District.

North America

In Mexico, the incoming  President Claudia Sheinbaum, the first female president in the country, has a background as a climate scientist and there is hope for a shift in energy policy towards renewable energy.

In the U.S., researchers have made a groundbreaking discovery of a significant source of geothermal energy underneath the U.S.-Mexico border, specifically along the Rio Grande in Presidio County, Texas. 

As another example of AI and data centers, Google plans to power its Nevada data centers with 115 MW of geothermal energy and invest in a new data center in Malaysia.Southern California Edison has signed two PPAs for 320MW of geothermal capacity from Fervo Energy. The 15-year agreements are ‘key to ensuring reliability’ when solar and wind resources are unavailable.

Naval Air Force El Centro in California

GreenFire Energy Updates

GreenFire Energy has redesigned its website. Read about our GreenFire’s GreenLoop® technology.

Mario Simanjuntak, U.S. Embassy, Jakarta and Iwan Chandra, representative for GreenFire Energy
Mario Simanjuntak, U.S. Embassy, Jakarta and Iwan Chandra, representative for GreenFire Energy

GreenFire Energy representatives were pleased to be invited to the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia for the U.S. Independence Day celebration.

SteelAsia president and chief operating officer Andrew Sy is said to be “eyeing to source power requirements for the new manufacturing plants from geothermal energy offered by Greenfire Energy, Inc.”

Conferences

GeoConvention 2024
June 17-19, 2024
Calgary, AB Canada
Greg Szutiak, GreenFire Energy, presented “Accelerating Geothermal Development in Canada with Advanced Geothermal System (AGS) Technology.

U.S. Embassy, Philippines, Media Seminar
July 8-9, 2024
Iloilo City, Philippines
Alberto Dalusung, Business Development-Philippines, will present GreenFire Energy’s technology.

Kenya Geothermal Congress
Kenya Geothermal Congress

Kenya Geothermal Congress 2024
July 16-18, 2024
Nairobi, Kenya
Sam Sainju, GreenFire Energy will present “Accelerating geothermal development in Kenya with GreenFire’s GreenLoop® technology.
Register

We are hiring. See the job postings at Careers. Contact John Muir at info@greenfireenergy.com to discuss your geothermal experience.