Asia Update: Geothermal in Japan, Indonesia, The Philippines

Japan: Geothermal Restrictions Eased

Japan’s Environment Ministry will ease restrictions on geothermal development activities in national or quasi-national parks. Reports have estimated 80% of Japan’s geothermal resources are located in these parks. There will be areas restricted to diagonal drilling and special protection zones. The Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry will inject ¥23 billion a year for geothermal financial assistance and debts guarantees as well as promoting the understanding of geothermal to the community.

The Philippines: Bids on Geothermal Contracts Announced

The Renewable Energy Management Bureau has received bids for several new service contracts and still plans to make the awards on September 4. The Southern Leyte geothermal prospect received bids from Repower Energy Development Corp.; Cabalian Bay Company, Inc.; and Aboitiz Renewables, Inc. The Amacan geothermal prospect in Compostela Valley received bids from APC Energy Resources, Inc.; Emerging Power, Inc.; Energy Development Corp.; Biliran Geothermal, Inc.; and Repower. The Unified Leyte Geothermal Power Plant (ULGPP) received only one bid, from Unified Leyte Geothermal Energy, Inc.

The Philippines: FIT for Geothermal a Possiblity

Propositions for the Philippines’ “Renewable Energy Act” could include new FIT incentives for geothermal as well as hydro projects. Energy Secretary officer-in-charge Zenaida Y. Monsada told press the NREB (National Renewable Energy Board) is initiating discussions and will evaluate the potential draw for investors.

The Philippines: PSALM to Discuss Next Moves for Unified Leyte

The Power Sector Assets Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) will soon meet to discuss the next move for the sale of remaining contracted capacity at the Unified Leyte Geothermal Power Plant (ULGPP). PSALM may then move to negotiate with Unified Leyte Geothermal Energy, Inc. (ULGEI), the sole company to bid on ULGPP in the recent auction; or PSALM may conduct another round of bids for the contract.

Indonesia: Ministry Seeking Input on Geothermal Permitting

Following passage of Indonesia’s geothermal legislation in August 2014, Indonesia’s Ministry of Energy and Mining Resources (ESDM) is responsible for devising regulations for the process. The U.S. Department of State is working with the ESDM on geothermal development issues and improvements. GEA Members and U.S. companies with information or experience in the current permitting process can help to ensure best practices as changes are considered. Items that will help include lists of current permit requirements and any notes on ones that overlap. Example frameworks from other countries will also help.

This article was originally published in part on GEA’s GeoEnergy Wire and was republished with permission.

Lead image: Glasses on a Map of Asia. Credit: Shutterstock.

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Leslie is located in Washington DC at the Office of the Geothermal Energy Association and serves on the Renewable Energy World North America Conference and Expo committee.

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