Interview with Alexander Richter
IGA President 2016-2019
Tell us about yourself.
Hi, my name is Alexander Richter, but people in the industry call me “Alex”. I am the Founder and Principal of ThinkGeoEnergy, a geothermal advisory firm and operator of the popular ThinkGeoEnergy geothermal news platform. On a daily basis I am sourcing and posting news on geothermal development worldwide along with my team, on our English, Spanish and Turkish-language platforms. ThinkGeoEnergy has also started to organise conferences and events, among them our annual IGC Turkey – a geothermal congress in Izmir/ Turkey, and a new Geothermal early-stage investment conference in Frankfurt. I am also acting as Marketing and Communications Director for British Green Energy Geothermal.
What makes Geothermal so great?
Really?! What kind of a question is this!? It is easy to be passionate about geothermal energy. Here is an amazing energy source – it provides essentially an unlimited resource for heating and power generation, and I am convinced this resource will play an important role in the world’s energy future. While we are often underrepresented among the other renewables, geothermal energy provides a unique combination of a renewable source for heating and electricity generation, and clearly deserves more attention on many levels. The opportunity for geothermal energy to “clean up” the heating sector and to help us move away from burning coal is tremendous. It is not surprising that China and other countries are looking at geothermal for district heating and rapidly adapting their cities to take advantage of this resource.
For electricity generation, we will likely see more development in regions with high temperature resources. However, small-scale and low-temperature geothermal power plants could also provide great opportunities for our sector and will have serious impact on the power supply of communities and businesses, e.g. in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.
It is this unique combination of heating and power generation that no other source of energy can match in a sustainable way. Geothermal energy presents opportunities to generate power, use heat directly for heating and many other direct use applications such as; agriculture and greenhouses, fish farming, bathing, food de-hydration, and many more. This makes it is easy for me to stand up for geothermal energy.
What makes IGA so great?
Every industry needs an international representation, and IGA proudly represents the global geothermal energy sector. IGA provides the network and platform to promote and support global geothermal energy development, while also facilitating research and education efforts to further our industry.