Davis, California, USA: -- The Geothermal Resources Council (GRC), one of the world’s premier geothermal associations, has completed a successful 39th GRC Annual Meeting at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, Reno, Nevada, USA.
At the Opening Session, GRC Annual Meeting Chair Lisa Shevenell welcomed the attendees from 26 different countries and introduced an array of speakers from the regional, national and global energy communities.
Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval greeted the meeting saying the importance of geothermal power production in the State of Nevada is well known. The Silver State recently exceeded 30 years of geothermal power generation with 2014 production of 2.742 million net MWh. This is enough to power 247,000 Nevada households. “Congratulations to all for achieving this important and impressive milestone.”
Despite the slow-down in the domestic U.S. industry the event was a success. The numbers tell the story. 629 attendees registered with the GRC for the Annual Meeting including 72 students who paid just $5. The GRC registration also included entry to the GEA Geothermal Energy Expo.
Over four days attendees were treated to over 135 technical presentations totaling 45 hours, bringing the latest geothermal research from around the world. On display were over 45 posters and the winners of the prestigious 36th GRC Photo Contest were showcased in a public area of the convention center.
Over 70 attended the pre-meeting workshops on Drilling and Risk Management and Practical Aspects and Applications of Geochemistry. Nearly 90 set out across Nevada and California on GRC Fieldtrips to view some superb geology and geothermal features and enjoy some useful networking. In addition over one hundred were able to tour the heating facility of the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino, the only resort in the United States whose heating source is totally provided from geothermal energy.
A highlight of the Annual Meeting, the Student Leadership Luncheon attracted more than 60 students and geothermal leaders to discuss job opportunities in the industry. In addition, the third annual GRC Scholarships were awarded to Marisa Earll – Master’s student in the Department of Hydrology and Water Resources at the University of Arizona; Owen Callahan - PhD candidate at University of Texas at Austin; Cari Covell - Master’s student at the Iceland School of Energy of Reykjavik University; Cary Lindsey - PhD student at University of Idaho; Thomas Lund - Mechanical Engineering student at University of Colorado, Boulder, and Jeffrey Olson - Petroleum Engineering student at Colorado School of Mines.
Demonstrating the focus on international involvement at the meeting the GRC hosted the 8th International Luncheon with representatives from Ukraine, Philippines and Indonesia reporting on the exciting developments in geothermal power in their countries. This popular event attracted 130 attendees.
The climax to the GRC Annual Meeting is the Annual Membership Meeting & Awards Luncheon where the GRC recognizes individuals for outstanding contributions to the Geothermal Resources Council and to the development of geothermal resources. The Joseph W. Aidlin Award was presented to Gene Suemnicht for lifetime contributions to geothermal exploration and development worldwide and exceptional commitment to GRC. The Geothermal Pioneer Award was given to Alfredo Lahsen for lifetime achievements in geothermal studies in the Andes and for educating generations of geothermal scientists in Latin America. Other awards were presented to individuals for a variety of achievements in the field of geothermal energy.
A popular networking opportunity, the annual GRC Charity Golf Tournament was held at the Red Hawk Golf Resort in nearby Sparks. Over 60 golfers played for charity with proceeds going to the local chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation and the GRC Student Scholarship program.
Among a wide range of social activities on offer the third annual Women in Geothermal meeting stood out, attracting over 60 professionals in the geothermal energy industry, both men and women, eager to share their knowledge and experience.
Held in tandem with the GRC Annual Meeting, GEA’s Geothermal Energy Expo featured 100 exhibits showcasing the latest in geothermal technological advancements. The GEA reports 540 attendees, including booth staff, guests and registrants that signed up for the trade show only.
For more information about next year’s 40th GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Expo in Sacramento, California, USA, visit www.geothermal.org/meet-new.html or call (530) 758-2360.