The Icelandic bank, Islandsbanki (formerly Glitnir) has issued its third annual U.S. Geothermal Energy Market Report in continuation of its research activities in geothermal energy. The report provides an updated overview on geothermal energy development in the United States, highlighting not only the increasing amount of activity in the sector, but also the elements that have helped spur the development.
In the U.S today there are around 144 geothermal energy projects in development with a combined capacity of up to 6,400 MW, which is an increase of about 60 percent compared to last year. While the state of California continues to lead in installed capacity, Nevada has even more projects in the pipeline with over 3,300 MW in development.
However, some of the further advanced projects are currently facing a number of challenges related to securing bridge finances that need to be developed beyond the drilling stage and also debt financing for construction. Current projects need a combined investment sum of US $26 billion, of which US $11 billion are for equity investment needs and US $15 billion for construction financing.
The stimulus legislation has definitely helped spur interest in the sector, with the investment tax credits, cash grants, loan guarantees and research development allocations all having a positive impact on the industry. Nevertheless, it will have to be seen what affect the tight time period of the loan guarantee program will have on most of the projects.
The Geothermal Energy Expo 2009, that took place at the Peppermill Resort & Casino in Reno/ Nevada between October 4-7, is the largest gathering of industry players from all over the world and this year’s event was the biggest ever hosting over 120 exhibitors and attracting thousands of visitors.
Islandsbanki has been represented at the event for the past three years, highlighting the committment that the bank has to the geothermal energy industry in the U.S.
To view the 3rd annual market report or for further information, visit www.islandsbanki.is/energy