15:20 | 22.10.2010
GEA Reports Show Industry Poised to Create Thousands of Jobs in 2011
Today at a press preview for the 2010 Geothermal Energy Expo, hosted by
the Geothermal Energy Association (GEA), Executive Director Karl Gawell
announced the findings of new industry reports that show the geothermal
industry will add thousands of jobs as dozens of new clean geothermal
power plants come online or enter advanced stages of development.
GEA released reports on job creation in the geothermal industry and an
industry update that showed how the industry is creating more jobs than
conventional energy and is creating jobs that are permanent, full-time,
and often provide a higher wage; in some cases with pay that doubles
county and state averages.
The GEA report—“Green Jobs through Geothermal Energy”—found that the
federal stimulus, tax incentives, and strong state renewable standards
continue to fuel the growth in geothermal power and job creation. Every
geothermal project that came online in 2009 took advantage of the tax
reimbursement provisions of the stimulus bill, which helped maintain
momentum for new projects and continue to create new jobs in America.
Four of the top five states with geothermal power under development have
substantial renewable electricity standards. In addition, the benefits
of the stimulus to the geothermal industry have yet to be fully
realized. About 95% of the projects receiving ARRA funding are either
less than 50% complete or have yet to break ground.
“Recovery Act funding is going to make a huge difference over the next
year to push projects to completion and create more jobs. The majority
of the ARRA investment will really start to pay dividends for the
economy in 2011,” said Karl Gawell, GEA Executive Director. “It is
critical that we continue to support these sound policies despite the
rancor of several short-sighted initiatives which seek to strip away
these tools to help grow our economy.”
GEA anticipates that 2011 will be a high-point of geothermal activity in
the US under the stimulus legislation. There will be approximately 500
to 700 Megawatts of power projects in the final construction phase in
2011, and these projects will add approximately 3,000 construction jobs,
primarily in Nevada and California. ARRA also appears to have drawn a
diverse group into the geothermal sector. Almost half of the Geothermal
Technologies Program awards from the stimulus went to non-industry
entities such as colleges and universities; cities, counties, and other
state and local institutions; tribal entities; and The Department of
Energy’s National Labs.
“Ram Power is proud to be part of the burgeoning geothermal industry in
the Western U.S. which owes its existence and robustness to the support
of the state and federal mandates and incentives. We believe that the
Imperial Valley in Southern California and the Geysers in Northern
California are two world class geothermal resource areas and we are
diligently working to finance and execute more than 300MW of projects,
for which we have power sales agreements. Over $1B will ultimately be
invested in Ram projects in California—creating drilling and
construction jobs as well as high-paying, permanent plant operations
jobs across the state,” said Jeremy Magrath, Project Manager, Business
Development, Ram Power Inc.
“Potter Drilling is developing a revolutionary hard rock drilling
technology that holds the promise to lower the cost and risk of
developing geothermal power. Recovery act funding has helped Potter
Drilling to create and maintain high paying green jobs and to accelerate
development of our technology,” said Jared Potter, CEO, Potter Drilling
As more geothermal industry jobs are being created, a number of colleges
and universities across the country are emerging with undergraduate,
graduate, and certification programs related to geothermal. GEA compiled
the “US Geothermal Education and Training Guide” that details 22
undergraduate and graduate programs at U.S. colleges and universities.
Additionally, 31 schools have research opportunities in geothermal
studies available to students.
“To keep creating jobs in the geothermal industry, we must keep getting
talented individuals coming into the industry. The programs at these
leading schools will develop the next generation of geothermal
professionals,” Gawell said.
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson welcomed the expected 2,500 attendees and
160 exhibitors to the world’s largest Expo dedicated to geothermal
power. “Sacramento is pleased to welcome the geothermal industry back to
where geothermal power started in the United States,” said Mayor
Johnson. “Northern California has been a thriving hotspot for this
activity for decades and we are thrilled to bring the geothermal
community together from all around the world to our city for the 2010
Geothermal Energy Expo.”
The 2010 Geothermal Energy Expo, held at the Sacramento Convention
Center Oct. 24-27, is the world’s largest gathering of geothermal
professionals and showcases projects, equipment, services, and state of
the art technology. A Virtual Job Fair connects qualified applicants
with the industry’s leading companies. Complimentary admission is
available to college students. The Expo floor will be open to the public
on Wed., Oct. 27, from 12:00pm to 2:00pm. More than 2,500 attendees and
over 160 exhibitors are expected to attend. With new geothermal power
projects in progress in fifteen states from the Pacific to the Gulf
Coast, the expo has been rapidly expanding with the number of exhibitors
at the Geothermal Energy Expo more than doubling since 2008.
“We have exhibitors from 31 states and 10 countries represented at this
year’s expo. With open admission to the public on Wednesday, Oct. 27 and
complimentary admission to students for the entire expo, we are going to
see the largest and most exciting Expo ever,” said Kathy Kent, GEA
Marketing and Events Manager.
Leaders from the US geothermal power industry will discuss the findings
in the “Green Jobs through Geothermal Energy” report at a press
conference held in Sacramento, Calif., on Friday, Oct. 22, at 10:00am
PT/1:00pm ET. To attend or receive dial-in information, please contact
Garret Drexler, 646-695-7042 or email@example.com.
The complete reports are available at http://geo-energy.org/reports.aspx.
For more information on the 2010 Geothermal Energy Expo, including
exhibitors and schedule, visit: http://www.geothermalenergy2010.com/default.asp
About the Geothermal Energy Association:The Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) is a trade association
composed of U.S. companies who support the expanded use of geothermal
energy and are developing geothermal resources worldwide for electrical
power generation and direct-heat uses. GEA advocates for public policies
that will promote the development and utilization of geothermal
resources, provides a forum for the industry to discuss issues and
problems, encourages research and development to improve geothermal
technologies, presents industry views to governmental organizations,
provides assistance for the export of geothermal goods and services,
compiles statistical data about the geothermal industry, and conducts
education and outreach projects. For more information, please visit http://www.geo-energy.org/.
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