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Geothermal Power

Not on track
Dan Meyers Xzfofxomq 4 Unsplash

In this report

Geothermal electricity generation increased an estimated 2% in 2020, falling below average growth of the previous five years, with a capacity increase of ~200 MW. This technology is not on track with the Net Zero Emissions by 2050 Scenario, which requires 13% annual increases in generation over 2021-2030, corresponding to average annual capacity expansions of ~3.6 GW. Policies to help reduce costs and mitigate predevelopment risks are needed to increase geothermal-based power generation.

Geothermal power generation in the Net Zero Scenario, 2000-2030

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Tracking progress

Electricity generation from geothermal sources increased an estimated 2% year-on-year in 2020, falling below average growth of the previous five years. Geothermal capacity additions averaged 500 MW per year in the last five years, with Turkey, Indonesia and Kenya responsible for most of this growth. These countries are expected to continue to lead, as they have abundant and untapped resource availability. 

Nevertheless, geothermal technology is still not on track to reach the required Net Zero 13% generation increases per year over 2021-2030, corresponding to ~3.6 GW of average annual capacity additions. Policies to decrease costs and tackle challenges associated with predevelopment risks are needed to enlarge the deployment of geothermal resources for power generation. 

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