Workshop 3: Rural Geothermal Across the Americas

12:00 PM - 5:00 PM | Friday, October 25

Modern geothermal energy production has been centered in areas with high market demand for electricity or heat to justify the costs of exploration, drilling, and operations. In recent years, as research has advanced and technology has improved, there is a new door opening for the future of geothermal energy. The geothermal anywhere paradigm will offer a chance for remote, rural, and island communities to take advantage of thermal resources in regions where hydrothermal systems are not present. These rural communities, which have historically suffered from unequal access to energy networks and utilities, can now explore new opportunities that AGS, EGS, and decentralized geothermal applications are on the cusp of offering at scale. Additionally, the Workshop will examine how to improve educational opportunities and finance options for rural communities in regions where hydrothermal systems do exist. 


This Workshop will dive deeper into current research surrounding next-generation and conventional geothermal technologies, education, and socio-economics in rural settings. The investigations discussed in the Workshop are taking place across the North and South American continents, ranging from the First Nation Communities of Northern Canada to West Texas border towns, to alpine communities across the Andean Mountain range.


The researchers who will lead this Workshop are all members of the UNESCO funded IGCP-636 Project: Geothermal Resources for Energy Transition. The IGCP-636 Project has three pillars of focus which guide all its research and outreach efforts.


  1. Improve the understanding of mechanisms governing high, medium, and low enthalpy geothermal system processes, such as heat and mass transfer in fractured and porous media, fluid-rock interactions, rock fissuring, and reactivation of existing faults, through:
  • Monitoring, collecting, and sharing available data to enhance the building of conceptual models.
  • Sharing modeling experiences to provide information about different software and their capabilities.
  • Sharing laboratory facilities, taking advantage of students’ mobility.


  1. Foster the installation of shallow geothermal systems, through:
  • Analysis and feasibility of geothermal heat pumps.
  • Use of other energy technology equipment/systems (such as thermosiphons, ejectors, ORC, and others) and development of advanced practices to render this source of energy accessible.
  • Use of groundwater to directly cool buildings and mitigate the urban heat island effect.


  1. Promote educational activities about geoscience and geothermal as renewable, clean, and base-load energy through:
  • Analysis of previous educational experiences in some of the IGCP-636 participating countries.
  • Building of dissemination and learning activities to share knowledge of geoscience and geothermal resources to children.
  • Promoting training activities, such as diploma or workshops, for project members and guests focused on vital issues for the development of geothermal energy in each IGCP-636 country (low and high enthalpy).

Lunch and break service are included in the workshop registration fees ($295).