We’re huge fans of geothermal energy at Davies-Smith - after all, Ironstone Condos will be using this highly efficient and sustainable energy source. If you are unfamiliar with it, you can learn all you need to know about it in two minutes.

For this post, we decided to spotlight three countries who are rockin’ geothermal energy usage: Iceland, New Zealand, and Kenya.

Iceland

Naked Earth - Hveravellir Geothermal Peninsula, Iceland

Hveravellir Geothermal Peninsula, Iceland

Iceland is a geothermal energy using champion. Almost a hundred countries use geothermal energy, but no one does it quite like Iceland does it. A whopping 87 per cent of Iceland homes are heated with geothermal energy which saves them millions of dollars of importing oil. Furthermore, 25 per cent of the country’s total electricity is also generated by geothermal energy (the other 75 per cent is generated by hydropower – which means 100 per cent of Iceland’s electricity is powered by renewable energy).

Iceland rocking geothermal energy can be attributed to the high concentration of volcanoes in the area.

Iceland may soon be helping more countries use geothermal energy too. With such an abundance of the renewable energy source, selling and exporting it is now on the table.

New Zealand

Geothermal pool near Rotorua, North Island, New Zealand

Geothermal energy is believed to be New Zealand’s more reliable renewable energy source, and they are recognized globally for their efforts and the standards they have set. New Zealand has several geothermal areas as it sits over two active plates, but most geothermal energy usage has occurred in the Taupo Volcanic Regions.

The first recorded use of geothermal energy in New Zealand dates back to hundreds of years ago, when those living in North Island Māori used it for cooking, bathing and therapeutic purposes. Later, European settlers discovered the healing power of thermal springs which led to the development of spa baths.

Being a geothermal superstar, New Zealand recently signed on to help Chile boost it’s efforts in geothermal development and reach their potential

Kenya 

Olkaria III geothermal plant, Kenya

Kenya was the first African country to adopt geothermal energy as a means of providing power, and it is sourced from the Great Rift Valley. Kenya is also home to the largest geothermal power plant on the continent,  Olkaria II. In Africa, geothermal power is predominantly used in their agricultural projects; the Oserian flower farm utilizes steam wells to power its greenhouse.

Because of Kenya’s early involvement in the geothermal industry, the World Bank has significantly backed them up financially.

Currently, the majority of  Kenya’s electricity is supplied by strained hydro-electrical power dams. But because the weather is extremely erratic and sometimes it doesn’t rain for weeks, this system doesn’t always fare well for the people of Kenya. For Kenya, geothermal energy is not only a more sustainable alternative, it’s also the key to progress and can help Kenya become a developed country by 2030.

What are your thoughts? Do you think Canada needs to invest more into geothermal research?