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Is geothermal on the move?
A "news release" from the Department of Energy is included below.
Apparently, the Department of Energy (DOE) is considering issuing "funding opportunities" to groups that can figure out a method of "...increasing the use of traditional hydrothermal and geothermal" projects under a "demonstration project" concept "...in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and enhance our energy security."
There are numerous existing technologies in world-wide daily application that do generate electrical power from hydrothermal and geothermal resources.
For clarity, "hydrothermal" and "geothermal" basically hot water that is being used to produce electricity.
Interestingly, there are numerous "geothermal projects" being proposed for development on public lands under the management control of the Bureau of Land Management. Test wells have been drilled. Test results have not been released.
Could it be this is now the valve being opened to fund questionable projects at tax-payer expense?
Note, this news release talks about "demonstration projects." Demonstration projects can consume a lot of funding without accomplishing a result.
Time will tell.....
DOE To Invest US $90 Million in Advanced Geothermal Energy
June 27, 2008 - Washington, D.C.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for up to US $90 million over four years to advance the research, development and demonstration of next-generation geothermal energy technology.
DOE said that it plans to make up to 26 awards through this competitive funding opportunity, which is open to industry and academia.
Funding is available at US $10.5 million for fiscal year (FY) 2008. Subject to annual Congressional appropriations, up to an additional US $30 million is expected to be available for awards in FY 2009 and US $49.5 million in FY 2010.
A minimum of 20 percent private sector cost share is required for R&D projects and funding for the awards is subject to Congressional appropriations. Recipient cost share requirements for demonstration projects will be up to 50 percent and vary by both the phase of the award and the activities within a particular phase.
"Geothermal energy is a clean, reliable, scalable, renewable energy source and these geothermal projects will help the U.S. tap domestic heat sources that were previously out of reach," said Andy Karsner, DOE's Assistant Secretary of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. "Increasing the use of traditional hydrothermal and geothermal base load resources is an important component of the Administration's efforts to diversify our nation's energy sources in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and enhance our energy security."
Applications for this funding opportunity are due on or before August 12, 2008.