Global Geothermal Energy Market - Growth Trends and Forecasts (2018 - 2023)

By 2026, geothermal capacity is expected to account for around 1-2% of the overall installed renewables capacity, at the global level, as wind and solar will remain the technologies of choice for developers and policymakers. The ongoing underperformance of the global geothermal sector can be partly attributed to the fact that geothermal power resources are restricted to certain regions across the world, namely tectonically active areas. Furthermore, the inhibitive upfront costs of geothermal and technical challenges of the drilling process deter renewable energy developers. Initial construction costs for geothermal can represent between half and two thirds of total costs; with a large component of the upfront capital being spent on exploration studies and drilling. It is difficult to predict the success rate of the drilling or the suitability of the site, thus, posing sizeable financial risks to investors. Given these significant risks, developers are unlikely to proceed with projects in countries where access to finance is restricted and an attractive regulatory framework has not been implemented.

Flash Technologies – Occupied the Largest Share in the Geothermal-installed Capacity

Geothermal energy is used in power generation, for direct heating, and storage-retrieval. The technologies employed are well proven and ancient. However, the industry’s inability to evolve standard designs and incorporate new technologies has harmed its cost competitiveness. Currently, geothermal power generation is based on the following four technology options: Direct dry steam plants, Flash plants, Binary plants, and Combined-cycle plants. Flash technologies, including double and triple flash, compose approximately two-thirds of the installed capacity globally, followed by dry steam. The back pressure and other developing and experimental types of geothermal technologies hold the minimal share in the global geothermal energy market.

Indonesia –The Future Outperformer

The US is the largest market for installed geothermal capacity, followed by the Philippines and Indonesia respectively. Although the US and the Philippines are currently the largest and second-largest geothermal markets in the world by installed capacity, growth will be fairly subdued in both markets, owing to regulatory and geographical limitations. However, by 2019, Indonesia is expected to emerge as one of the largest geothermal markets, at the global level, as investor interest in the sector ticks up and the project pipeline strengthens, accordingly. Over the longer term, Indonesian geothermal capacity is expected to increase from 1,850MW in 2017 to over 3GW by 2026. In contrast to Indonesia's robust growth outlook, the geothermal sectors of the United States and the Philippines are expected to register much smaller expansions. Policy uncertainty and the lack of supportive regulations in the United States are likely to leave the geothermal sector struggling to gain momentum, while other renewable energy technologies expand.

Key Developments in the Market

• January 2018: Ormat Technologies Inc. entered into a definitive agreement to acquire U.S. Geothermal, Inc., a renewable energy company focused on the development, production, and sale of electricity, from geothermal energy for a total consideration of approximately USD 109.9 million.
• January 2018: Italian Enel Green Power started the exploration phase of its first geothermal project in Indonesia, the 55 MW Way Ratai geothermal project in the province of Lampung.
• June 2017: The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to USD 4 million in funding for six geothermal Deep Direct-Use (DDU) research projects to conduct feasibility studies of large scale, low-temperature deep-well geothermal systems, and cascaded surface technologies. These projects will extend the reach of geothermal energy into previously untapped regions of the country: the Appalachian Basin, the Illinois Basin, the Wassuk Range, the Columbia River Basalt Group, the Walker Lake Valley, and the Gulf Coast region of Texas.



• To identify the market drivers, restraints, and opportunities that are possessed by the global geothermal energy market, with in-depth analysis
• To analyze the industry attractiveness, with the help of Porter’s five forces analysis
• To identify the most dominating type of technology, with the studied market estimate in the global geothermal energy market
• To identify the largest, fastest growing, and significant regions during the forecast period, with in-depth analysis
• To identify the latest developments and strategies that are employed by the major market players
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