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New Zealand joins global move to raise geothermal power generation

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-12-08 14:19

New Zealand joins global move to raise geothermal power generation

Pipes at Wairakei Thermal Power Station, New Zealand, Jan 31, 2012. [Photo/IC]

WELLINGTON - New Zealand has become the newest member of an international organization aimed at harnessing geothermal power, Resources Minister Simon Bridges announced Tuesday.

The country had joined the Global Geothermal Alliance (GGA), an initiative led by the International Renewable Energy Agency to increase geothermal electricity generation and the direct use of geothermal heat.

"Joining the alliance will position New Zealand firms to benefit from geothermal projects and partnerships around the world," said Bridges, who is attending the Paris climate talks, in a statement from his office.

New Zealand currently had geothermal experts operating around the world, including in the Philippines, Indonesia, the Caribbean and the Pacific.

"New Zealand has a long and successful history in the development of geothermal resources, with the first plant established still providing a reliable electricity source over 50 years later," said Bridges.

"We are now the fourth largest geothermal power generator in the world, after the United States, the Philippines and Indonesia," he said.

"As the world transits towards a lower carbon future, the increased demand for renewable energy, coupled with the ongoing interest in energy security, has focused attention on geothermal energy. Worldwide installed capacity is forecast to double this decade," he added.

The GGA's objectives were to encourage geothermal investment and help integrate geothermal facilities into energy markets.

Other members of the GGA include Bolivia, Burundi, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Djibouti, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Fiji, France, Honduras, Iceland, Nicaragua, Kenya, the Philippines, the United States, Turkey, the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank.

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