Launched at COP21*, the Global Geothermal Alliance (GGA) serves as a platform for dialogue, cooperation and coordinated action between the geothermal industry, policy makers and stakeholders worldwide.
As stated in the Joint Communiqué on the Global Geothermal Alliance, the GGA is a coalition for action to increase the use of geothermal energy, both in power generation and direct use of heat. It calls on governments, business and other stakeholders to support the deployment of realizable geothermal potential. The Alliance has an aspirational goal to achieve a five-fold growth in the installed capacity for geothermal power generation and more than two-fold growth in geothermal heating by 2030.
What the GGA is designed to do?
* The 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), held in Paris, France, in December 2015
Argentina, Bolivia, Burundi, Chile, Colombia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Djibouti, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Fiji, France, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Kingdom of the Netherlands, Malaysia, Mexico, Montserrat, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, Switzerland, Tonga, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United Republic of Tanzania, United States of America, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Zambia, Zimbabwe
The GGA is an inclusive and neutral multi-stakeholder platform that brings together public, private, intergovernmental and non-governmental actors that share a common vision of accelerating the deployment of geothermal energy for power generation and other applications.
Member countries include geothermal resource-rich countries with established or emerging geothermal markets, along with other countries that wish to support the activities of the Alliance.
Requests by interested countries and institutions should be sent to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the coordinator and facilitator of the GGA, by way of an official written request addressed to IRENA’s Director-General.
Member countries and partner institutions are not required to contribute any membership fee. The costs associated with GGA activities, including coordination meetings, shall be borne by participants.
The GGA Action Plan was endorsed by Members and Partners in May 2016, based on the principles stipulated in the GGA Joint Communique. It is set to coordinate closely with existing structures, programmes and facilities that share the common objective of promoting geothermal energy deployment at the international, regional and national levels. The Alliance will operate based on activities linked to the priority action areas identified in the GGA Action Plan, and will be supported in implementation as well as funding by committed Members and Partners.
The Global Atlas for Renewable Energy is a free online resource-assessment tool inclusive of maps on geothermal energy as well as solar, wind, marine and bioenergy resources. It facilitates a first screening of areas of geothermal investment opportunity
The BBA Geothermal Transparency Guide is an online tool which provides an insight into the legal frameworks governing exploration and development of geothermal energy, as well as an overview of data on energy production and capacity. Currently, 16 countries endowed with geothermal resources are featured in the database, with further countries to be included.
IGA database of global geothermal courses is an online platform that provides an overview of geothermal training courses and programmes by continent and country.
The information presented includes the location and name of the course or programme, the teaching language, the main research focus, the qualification awarded and contact details.
The Geothermal Training Programme in Iceland (GRO GTP) is a postgraduate training programme to assist developing countries build capacity for geothermal exploration and development.
The programme consists of six-months’ training for practising professionals from developing and transitional countries with significant geothermal potential. Priority is given to countries where geothermal development is under way, to maximise technology transfer. The programme is offered annually and covers eight specialised themes:
The Geothermal Training programme operated in Iceland between 1978 and 2019 as the United Nations Geothermal Training Programme (UNU-GTP) as a collaboration between the Government of Iceland and the United Nations University; and from 2020 it operates as GRO GTP under the auspices of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). It is hosted at Orkustofnun (National Energy Authority of Iceland).
The hallmark of GRO GTP is to give university graduates engaged in geothermal work intensive training in their chosen fields of specialisation. The trainees work side by side with geothermal experts in Iceland drawn from Iceland GeoSurvey, University of Iceland, Reykjavik University and other agencies/companies. The aim is to help developing countries with significant geothermal potential build up groups of specialists that cover most aspects of geothermal exploration and development. This increases their capacity to develop and utilise their geothermal resources.
GRO GTP also offers successful candidates the possibility of extending their studies to MSc or PhD degrees in geothermal sciences or engineering in co‑operation with the University of Iceland and Reykjavik University. Short course series are offered annually in East Africa (held in Kenya) and Latin America and the Caribbean (held in El Salvador) in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
For further information visit www.grocentre.is/gtp.
The first high-level conference of the Global Geothermal Alliance took place on 11 September 2017 in Florence, Italy. The meeting was attended by 230 high-level public, intergovernmental, non-governmental and senior private sector representatives. Under the terms of the ‘Florence Declaration’ – an outcome of the meeting – governments reaffirmed the commitment to work together to identify and implement measures that will significantly increase the speed of geothermal energy development around the world.
Agenda, presentations, and pictures of the conference are available here
20 May – 03 June 2022 | Virtual
In the framework of IRENA’s support to Mongolia for the development of a Strategic Heating and Cooling Plan (SHCP), the Agency, organised capacity building workshops to share global best practices for the development of renewable based district heating systems, with the Mongolian stakeholders.
Workshop 1: 20 May 2022
Strategic heating and cooling planning.
Presentations and recording available here.
Workshop 2: 3 June 2022
Enabling framework conditions and addressing technical barriers
Presentations and recording available here.
27 July 2021 |
The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), together with the Africa Union Commission (AUC) and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) organised an event on 27 July 2021 to support the ongoing efforts by some countries in the East Africa Rift region to develop dedicated geothermal policies and regulatory frameworks. It provided an opportunity for policy makers in those countries to learn from the insights, experiences and best practices of their peers in the region and form Mexico, concerning the development and implementation of enabling policies and regulatory frameworks for geothermal power and direct use.
22 June 2021 |
The Annual Meeting of the Global Geothermal Alliance (GGA) was held on 22 June 2021. It provided an opportunity for the GGA members and partners to share experiences, and best practices and discuss the opportunities and challenges for geothermal development globally. The members and partners were encouraged to increase collaboration in the framework of the Alliance.
As the facilitator and coordinator of the Alliance, IRENA presented updates of GGA activities for the past year and the next steps for the coming period.
The key achievements of GGA included the publication of the geothermal market assessment report for East Africa and the Guidebook for integrating low-temperature renewables, which were developed through a consultative process involving experts drawn from the Alliance. Capacity-building activities for policymakers to promote geothermal energy deployment in district heating and cooling systems were implemented in Belarus and China.
The development of the GGA knowledge-sharing platform – revamp of the GGA website – continued with the bringing online of the geothermal regional and country profiles. The profiles contain information relating to installed capacity for electricity and heat, the programmes instituted at the country or regional level to support geothermal development and existing regulatory frameworks, among others.
The report highlighting the key lessons and recommendations from the pilot implementation of the Specifications for the Application of the United Nations Framework Classification (UNFC-2009) to Geothermal Energy Resources was launched during the meeting. Key partners provided the status, challenges as well as opportunities for implementing the UNFC to geothermal projects.
The participants pointed out the increasing importance of geothermal direct use, particularly in the agri-food sector. Representatives of various members and partners shared the achievements and challenges of implementing direct use projects. The contribution of the members in supporting GGA and geothermal development globally was also acknowledged.
Going forward, GGA will continue supporting all efforts by the industry to raise the profile of geothermal energy. Geothermal can play a more significant role in the climate context, including in the realization of the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). The UN high-level dialogue on energy and the COP 26 were identified as the key event where geothermal energy could be included in the global agenda. IRENA informed the GGA constituency that it would be seeking to review, and if necessary, adjusted the priority areas of the GGA to ensure that they reflect the needs of the rapidly changing energy transition landscape.
The presentations from the meeting are available here:
09 March 2021 |
In the framework of the “Energy Solutions for Cities of the Future” project, and under the umbrella of the Global Geothermal Alliance, IRENA has organised a virtual workshop with a focus on China on 9 March 2021 titled “Integrating low-temperature renewables in district energy systems,”. The workshop was organised in collaboration with Aalborg University, Denmark with the support of the Chinese Renewable Energy Engineering Institute (CREEI).
The objective of the workshop was to increase the knowledge of policymakers at the national, provincial and local levels; urban planners; district heating utilities; etc on the options and available tools for facilitating the integration of renewable energy applications in district heating and cooling networks.
Presentations and recording are available here.
03 – 04 February 2021 | Virtual, with a focus on Belarus
IRENA organized a virtual workshop on 3-4 February 2021 titled “Integrating low-temperature renewable energy sources in district heating and cooling systems.” The workshop focused on Belarus, and was organized in collaboration with the State Committee for Standardisation of the Republic of Belarus and with technical input from Aalborg University, Denmark.
The objective of the workshop was to equip district heating and cooling stakeholders in Belarus, including policymakers at the national, regional and local levels; urban planners; district heating operators/utilities; etc. with knowledge on the options and tools for integrating low-temperature renewable energy sources in district heating and cooling networks.
Presentations and recording are available here.
20 April – 26 May 2020 |
The objective of the webinars is to disseminate information to policy makers at the national and local level, on the available options and tools for enabling the integration of low-temperature renewable energy sources, including low-temperature geothermal energy resources, into new and existing district heating and cooling networks.
The webinars, organised in partnership with the Aalborg University, will take place on the following dates in April and May 2020:
Webinar 1: 20 April 2020
Strategic heating and cooling planning for the integration of low-temperature renewable energy sources in district energy networks: What key success factors?
Presentations and recording available here
Webinar 2: 14 May 2020
Enabling framework conditions, financing and business models for district energy networks
Presentations and recording available here
Webinar 3: 26 May 2020
Integration of low-temperature renewable energy sources into existing district energy networks and buildings - Overcoming technical challenges
Presentations and recording available here
11 – 12 January 2020 | Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
In the framework of the Tenth Session of IRENA Assembly, IRENA organised a thematic meeting of the Global Geothermal Alliance on 12 January 2020.
During the meeting of the GGA, representatives from Members and Partners and other key stakeholders discussed the status of the geothermal activities undertaken under the umbrella of the Alliance as well as the challenges, experiences and possible solutions to support geothermal development at national and regional level. The activities discussed include, among others, a geothermal market assessment for electricity and direct use in Eastern Africa, capacity building on the integration of low-temperature renewable energy resources in district heating and cooling networks and the joint IGA/IRENA/World Bank project on the classification of geothermal resources in accordance with the specifications for the application of UNFC-2009 to geothermal energy resources.
The presentations from the event are available here.- Global Geothermal Alliance: Updates on activities in 2019
05 – 06 December 2019 | Belgrade, Serbia
Under the umbrella of the Global Geothermal Alliance, IRENA organised a capacity building event on the “Integration of low-temperature renewable energy sources in district heating systems” in collaboration with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD); and back-to-back with a complementary event led by the bank on the Renewable District Energy in the Western Balkans (ReDEWeB) Programme. The event was held in the framework of the IKI project, “Energy Solutions for Cities of the Future”, and contributed to increasing the knowledge of local and national policy-makers and key stakeholders; on options and existing tools to facilitate fuel switch to low-temperature renewable energy in district heating and cooling in cities, particularly geothermal energy. The Agenda and the presentations for the event are available here.
05 – 07 February 2019 | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
IRENA, the International Geothermal Association (IGA) and the World Bank co-organised a technical session with the Geological Survey of Ethiopia (under the Ministry of Mines) and UN Environment. The group trained local stakeholders on the UNFC specifications to geothermal energy and gathered information for the application in pilot fields in Ethiopia. The event was organised in the framework of a project currently undertaken by IRENA, IGA and the World Bank’s ESMAP, under the umbrella of the Global Geothermal Alliance.
12 January 2019 | Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Side event of the Global Geothermal Alliance was held in the framework of the Ninth Session of the IRENA Assembly.
This meeting, took place on 12 January from 13:15 to 14:15, and provided the opportunity to share insights and experience on geothermal power and heat as well as to facilitate networking between GGA members and partners as well as other key stakeholders.
05 – 07 December 2018 | Saint Lucia
The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States Commission (OECS) together with International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the International Geothermal Association (IGA) and the World Bank organised the Geothermal Energy Roundtable and United Nations Framework Classification (UNFC) Training Course for Geothermal Energy on 5th -7th December 2018, in Saint Lucia.
The event brought together key experts and decision-makers from the region to help advance and initiate regional cooperation for geothermal energy. The dialogue was followed by a training workshop that introduced the UNFC classification as part of a project currently undertaken by IRENA, IGA and the World Bank’s ESMAP, under the umbrella of the Global Geothermal Alliance. Programme and summary report are available on the OECS’s website here.
24 April 2018 | Reykjavík, Iceland
Two events of the Global Geothermal Alliance (GGA) took place in framework of the Iceland Geothermal Conference.
The first event on “Geothermal Direct Utilisation and Food Security” offered participants the chance to identify the key factors behind successful experience and presented partnership opportunities for projects and programmes related to the direct uses of geothermal energy with focus on food and agriculture.
The second GGA event, “Regional Cluster workshop: Strategies for future collaboration”, aimed to strengthen collaboration between regional and national industry platforms. The purpose of this event was to identify strategies which can be jointly developed or supported by industry clusters to promote geothermal development globally.
20 – 23 March 2018 | Flores Island, Indonesia
The International Geothermal Association, IRENA, and the World Bank/ESMAP organised a technical session to collect data and train Indonesian government officials and project developers on the application of the United Nations Framework Classification for Fossil Energy and Mineral Reserves and Resources 2009 (UNFC-2009) to geothermal prospects on the island of Flores. The session kick-started a joint project undertaken in the framework of the Global Geothermal Alliance.
31 January – 02 February 2018 | Nairobi, Kenya
The workshop, organised with the support of the Government of Japan, gathered participants from governments, utilities, public and private companies as well as international, regional, and local financial institutions. The event allowed to assess the geothermal market status in East Africa, identify the main options to overcome the barriers that countries and project developers still face in the region, share best practices and innovative models to finance operations, including geothermal risk mitigation mechanisms, and explore how technical assistance can effectively support the scaling up of geothermal energy in the region.
Key findings available here.
22 November 2017 | Online
IRENA organized a webinar on 22 November 2017 on the development of bankable geothermal power projects. Experts in the field discussed best practices to assist project developers in developing bankable geothermal power projects. View the webinar
16 November 2017 | Bonn, Germany
Organised within the framework of the UNFCCC COP23 in Bonn, this High-Level Roundtable on will gather high-level representatives to examine how geothermal energy can play a role in the achievement of decarbonisation goals and in the implementation of nationally determined contributions. The event will also offer an opportunity to discuss how the GGA can further contribute to facilitating the exchange of experiences and best practices, mobilising finance to unlock geothermal investments and providing modern and sustainable energy services for all countries.
07 November 2017 | Frankfurt, Germany
ICG Invest Geothermal addresses today’s burning issues in geothermal investment in creating and fostering an investment and financing ecosystem to provide a line of informed public and private equity to fuel growth. Organised by ThinkGeoEnergy and Enerchange in partnership with GGA partners EGEC and World Bank, the event will be focusing on important elements of investing in geothermal energy development, such as risk mitigation, early stage financing, market incentives, blended financing options, multi-player projects and exit strategies.
21 – 22 August 2017 | San Salvador, El Salvador
During two days, 21-22 August 2017, representatives from the governments of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Costa Rica and Panama as well as geothermal experts from the region and beyond exchanged views on the state of play and the key areas of support required to accelerate the deployment of geothermal energy in Central America. The second day of the workshop included the presentation of best practices from around the world and a visit to the Ahuachapán Geothermal Field and Power Plant.
23 – 26 October 2016 | Sacramento, USA
The event brought together geothermal leaders, developers, and exhibitors to exchange expertise and discuss geothermal developments in USA and abroad. It also featured an opportunity to familiarize the US stakeholders with the activities of GGA.
19 – 23 September 2016 | Strasbourg, France
Organised every 3 years, the European Geothermal Congress is the largest geothermal event in Europe. It also offered a platform to organize the GGA Meeting on Risk Mitigation and Project Financing
18 January 2016 | Abu Dhabi, UAE
The first gathering after the official launch of the initiative, aimed at collecting views on the priority areas of action for the Alliance.
08 December 2015 | Paris, France
The Global Geothermal Alliance has been launched at the COP 21 by a coalition of countries as well as development and industry partners.
15 – 16 June 2015 | Nairobi, Kenya
The event served as a platform to discuss the concept of the Global Geothermal Alliance initiative.
This report is a guidebook for policy makers which provides recommendations for accelerating the deployment of geothermal energy in the agri-food value chains. The recommendations are derived from an analysis of key success factors that enabled the development of various agri-food applications in different part of the world. The guidebook benefited from the input of 23 experts drawn from 17 member countries and partner organisations of the GGA, and other organisations.
The proposed recommendations address challenges related to inadequate data on geothermal resources and existing heating demand for agri-food applications, absent or misaligned enabling framework conditions, inadequate financing, and lack of awareness. In addition, the guidebook recommends the adoption of methodologies to determine the tariff for geothermal heat as well as for quantifying the socio-economic impacts of deploying geothermal heat in the agri-food sector, as tools for supporting decision making.
Geothermal energy has been improving in efficiency, and there are now more than 15.4 gigawatts (GW) of installed geothermal power plants globally. Estimates show that geothermal energy can supply about 8.3% of the total electricity needs of the world and serve about 17% of the global. Geothermal technology can produce clean, baseload and flexible power generation, making it a promising option for the transition to clean energy and a more sustainable economic model. In addition to power generation, geothermal energy has multiple applications as a heat source or sink in end-use sectors such as building, agrifood and industry.
Note:Publications prepared by the GGA Members and Partners