US geothermal sector receives $20m boost to lower drilling costs

The Department of Energy is looking to dramatically lower the costs of developing geothermal energy as drilling can sometimes exceed 50% of a project’s total costs

Big Zero Report 2022

Up to $20 million (£14.8m) in funding has been announced by the US Department of Energy (DOE) to support projects that demonstrate faster geothermal drilling.

The DOE is looking to dramatically lower the costs of developing geothermal energy as drilling can sometimes exceed 50% of a project’s total costs.

The Drilling Demos initiative, led by DOE’s Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO), builds upon the department’s advancements in geothermal drilling technologies that streamline drilling time and improve rates in laboratories.

Demonstrations within the latest initiative will accelerate the transfer of geothermal drilling from the laboratory to the marketplace.

The GTO is seeking applications from drilling service providers, well service companies, research institutions, geothermal operators and developers and others that can provide “real-world, immediate solutions” to address the issue.

Energy Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm said: “There is incredible, untapped potential to use the heat beneath our feet to meet our energy demands with a renewable source that can be found in all pockets of this country.

“Not only is the use of geothermal energy a significant asset for reaching a carbon-free grid by 2035, it can drive the creation of good paying jobs in energy communities as the country transitions to cleaner, more reliable energy sources.”

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