by Myrna Velasco – May 20, 2016
from Manila Bulletin
The state of Hawaii is taking its cue from the Philippines on geothermal energy development, hence, it has been exploring collaboration with the Lopez-run Energy Development Corporation (EDC) on such ventures.
In a statement to the media, EDC disclosed that Luis P. Salaveria, a Filipino-American director of the Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism, was recently in the country to advance talks on the proposed collaboration.
The Lopez firm noted that integrating geothermal on to the State’s energy mix has been part of its aspiration to become 100-percent renewable energy market onward to year 2045.
Hawaii is presently leaning on high fossil fuel energy mix, with 90-percent of its energy needs coming from oil.
Quoting Salaveria, EDC noted that their company is seen as “a possible partner of Hawaii in future cooperation agreement.”
EDC is currently the country’s largest geothermal energy producer – and has been intending to expand not only domestically but also offshore, primarily in Latin America and Indonesia.
“Hawaii is especially interested in gaining a deeper understanding about geothermal energy and how this renewable energy source can help in achieving HCEI’s (Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative) goal,” the Lopez firm said.
At present, the State’s geothermal production capacity is still considerably marginal at just 38 megawatts of capacity.
Nevertheless, EDC indicated that based on studies, “Hawaii may hold more than 1,000MW of geothermal reserves on Maui and Hawaii islands – two of its eight main islands of the state.
EDC added that while Hawaii has other RE options, like wind and solar, “these RE sources are intermittent and cannot be used to run baseload power plants.”
It further emphasized that “given its vast potential, Hawaii considers geothermal a natural RE option to run more baseload power plants in the future.”