Alberta is well-positioned to become a geothermal leader.
In a cold country like Canada, where the average temperature is 1°C, geothermal energy is more important in terms of its thermal capacity than its electrical capacity; more than 60% of our energy needs is spent on heating. Compared to other energy sources, geothermal is the only clean resource that is capable of effectively heating and providing electricity on a massive scale. Therefore, geothermal has great value not only as a clean power plant, but in terms of its direct heat use.
In comparison to the rest of the world, Canada’s geothermal industry is in its infancy. As Canadians, and Albertans specifically, we have the drilling expertise, well data, and geo-technical knowledge to jumpstart the industry. However, beyond understanding the geothermal resource, developing geothermal projects in Alberta requires a firm grasp on market economics and addressing geological challenges and unknowns.
In leading “Alberta No. 1”, Alberta’s first conventional geothermal energy facility, Terrapin explores the offtake requirements, electrical grid benefits, regulatory regime, value additions, and environmental and economic impacts of developing a geothermal project.
Geothermal energy is baseload - constant and reliable.
High availability and capacity factors of geothermal can help ensure the reliability of Alberta’s electrical grid.
We can use oil well data and drilling expertise.
Previous experience in the oil and gas industry provides a starting point for geothermal; though, there are key distinctions.
Developing the geothermal industry requires collaboration.
Growing the geothermal industry will require a coalition between geothermal project developers and drillers, finance groups, construction, and the public sector.