Australian Geothermal Industry Advances


Alexandra Long, Barry Goldstein, Tony Hill, Betina Bendall, Michael Malavazos, Anthony Budd

Key Words:

National status, Geothermal research

Geo Location:



Stanford Geothermal Workshop







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The Australian Geothermal Industry has made some exciting advances in the last year. Developments have been made in terms of company Engineered Geothermal System (EGS) and Hot Sedimentary Aquifer (HSA) projects, research projects and both state and national government initiatives.

Australian federal and state governments have provided more than AU$290 million (US$264 million) in grant funding for targeted geothermal company projects and geothermal research. This past year has seen the announcement of more Federal Government grants, which will be described in this paper as well as details of the successful grant recipients.

The Australian Geothermal Energy Group (AGEG) has also seen significant changes and developments, moving to become incorporated in 2009, and with its Technical Interest Groups undergoing some restructuring to align with international priorities under the International Partnership for Geothermal Technologies.

A number of AGEG-initiated geothermal project reports have beneficial findings for the industry. Additionally the joint AGEG Australian Geothermal Energy Association (AGEA) Geothermal Reporting Code Committee have completed useful revisions to the Australian Geothermal Code that will be formally released in 2010.

Key geothermal research centres have also been established. These include the Queensland Geothermal Energy Centre of Excellence at the University of Queensland, the Western Australian Geothermal Centre of Excellence which officially opened in December 2009, combining the

strengths of the University of WA, Curtin University and the CSIRO, and the newly established South Australian Centre for Geothermal Energy Research at the University of Adelaide which was announced in June 2009.

Other Universities such as the University of Newcastle, Melbourne University and the University of New South Wales also have strong geothermal programs.

The collective research, exploration, demonstration and early deployment efforts in Australia will both be founded on, and contribute to progress by the global geothermal sector. Key lessons learnt in Australia are related in this paper.

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