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Geothermal Power Projects
Geothermal Power Projects

World's installed geothermal power used for electricity is 11,765 MW (as of August 2013) with an annual production of 68.6 billion kWh. The first five countries in geothermal electricity generation are USA (over 80 operating geothermal plants), Philippines (8 plants), Mexico (7 plants), Indonesia (10 plants) and Italy (33 plants). Non-electricity utilization amounts to around 50,000 MW. The first five world countries in geothermal heating and spa practices are China, USA, Sweden, Turkey and Japan.

Since Turkey is located on the Alpine-Himalayan belt, it holds a substantially high geothermal potential. Areas with potential are concentrated mainly in Western Anatolia (79%). Turkey’s theoretical geothermal potential is around 31,500 MW out of which 2,000 MWe could be utilized directly for electricity production. Turkey has one eighth of the world geothermal potential and is ranked seventh in the world.

It is important to note that below 25 MW of electrical capacity, project developers are only required to conduct a simplified environmental assessment to get project approval by Ministry of Environment and Urbanization. Based on their experience, it appears that the main difficulties to develop geothermal projects are:

  • Technical: lack of a geothermal association; hindrance of usage of imported second hand equipment; reduced number of operators and consequent limited know-how;
  • Legislative: interpretation of regulation is not univocal; differences in the rules for license depending on the location;
  • Financial: VAT exemption is not guaranteed; exploration and drilling, one of the most expensive phases of a GEPP, are not financed by Banks and have to be sustained by the developers.

On the other hand, the guaranteed Feed-In Tariff of 105 USD/MWh is an important element which eases access to project financing.

According to the Turkish Geothermal Association, and based on government planning, the needs for investment in geothermal energy by 2018 can be summarized as shown in the table below. Payback time period generally ranges between 5 and 6 years.

10th development plan (2014 – 2018) of the Ministry of Development