Contracting Party:   Department of Energy and Mining (DEM), State Government of South Australia

Executive Committee Member:   Barry Goldstein, DEM, Australia

Alternate Member:   Betina Bendall, DEM, Australia

Direct use of geothermal resources is increasing, particularly in the States of Victoria and Western Australia were growth is steadily occurring with 11 commercial developments commissioned using geothermal direct use or ground source heat pump (GSHP) technology during 2018.

The use of geothermal energy for electricity generation requires successful technical and commercial demonstration before the widespread uptake of this technology will occur.  Activity in the Australian geothermal generation sector peaked in 2009 – 2010 with 10 unconventional geothermal projects across Australia at various stages of development.  Technical success was achieved at both the Habanero EGS reservoir in the Cooper Basin, by Geodynamics Ltd. and at the Paralana EGS reservoir in South Australia by Petratherm Ltd.

The lack of commercial success, influenced by a combination of high drilling costs, poor market conditions, retraction of private venture capital, and an uncertain renewable technologies policy environment overshadowed the significant  technical achievement.  The contraction of the sector led to projects either being abandoned or suspended and market conditions remain inadequate for the commercial sector to re-commence activities at this juncture (2019).

Construction is nearing completion on two 150 kW geothermal power plants at Winton, in central Queensland.  Commissioning is expected during 2019.

2018 Australia Country Report

2017 Australia Country Report

2016 Australia Country Report

2015 Australia Country Report

2014 Australia Country Report

2013 Australia Country Report

2012 Australia Country Report