French utility ENGIE said on Dec. 7 that its wholly owned subsidiary Storengy will work with Iceland geothermal development company Reykjavik Geothermal to study the development of geothermal projects in Mexico.
Following the signing of a cooperation agreement between Iceland and French geothermal clusters, the companies initiated a cooperative plan to apply and develop geothermal exploration permits and concession in Mexico.
The companies said that geothermal energy is Reykjavik Geothermal’s core business and an essential component of the energy transition in which ENGIE intends to be a key player.
Energy reform initiated by Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto offers the possibility for the private sector to enter the power generation market. Currently, geothermal energy represents 823 MW, or 1.3 percent of the country’s installed electrical capacity, but only 6.5 percent of total estimated geothermal potential of 13.4 GW. Mexico expects to reach 4.5 GW in 2030.
ENGIE said that its alliance with Reykjavik Geothermal will facilitate an efficient pursuit of those targets.
With a staff of over 2,300 employees in Mexico, ENGIE is one of the largest private gas pipeline operators and the number 2 natural gas distributor in the country. The Group is present in Mexico in power generation – three power plants, 300 MW – and cogeneration, but also in gas distribution and transport – including 1,000 km of pipelines – and energy services.
Reykjavik Geothermal has been actively developing geothermal energy in Mexico since 2011, with the participation in Ceboruco project in the state of Nayarit. The company, along with its partners, have been awarded by SENER one of the first two private geothermal exploration permits in the region of the Ceboruco 1 volcano. Reykjavik Geothermal anticipates the commissioning of the first power plant in Ceboruco in 2018.
Lead image: LE BOURGET near PARIS, FRANCE – NOVEMBER 30, 2015: President of United Mexican States Enrique Pena Nieto at the Paris COP21, United nation conference on climate change. Credit: Frederic Legrand – COMEO / Shutterstock.com