Istituto di Geoscienze e Georisorse     
Barbier E. Geothermal energy in the world energy scenario. In: Geothermics, vol. 15 (5/6) pp. 807 - 819. Proc. 1st Afro-Asian Geothermal Seminar, Chiang Mai, 1985. Elsevier, 1986.
This paper reports on the world energy consumption between 1960 and 1984 from primary energy sources (coal, natural gas, oil, hydropower, nuclear energy) and the same in percentages from 1925. This highlights the diminishing role of coal and the increased consumption of gas and oil. The latter has stabilized around 42% of the total after the drop in demand resulting from the oil crisis of 1973. The world energy consumption has then been divided into industrialized and developing countries. It appears that the latter, with a population equal to 68% of the total world population, consumed 23% of the world energy in 1982. Furthermore, the consumption figures show that the demand for domestic energy is much smaller in developing countries, and it is well-known that domestic energy consumed is one of the parameters used to assess standard of living. The total installed electric capacity throughout the world is then reported, divided between developed and developing countries, showing that the latter consumed 11% of all the electricity generated in the world in 1981. The world installed electric power of geothermal origin at the end of 1985 is shown, along with estimates for 1990. Geothermal energy represents 0.2% of the world electric power. This is obviously a small figure and indicates that geothermal energy plays a minor role on the world energy scene. However, if we distinguish between industrialized and developing countries, we can observe that, with their currently limited electrical consumption but good geothermal prospects, the developing countries could achieve quite a significant contribution to their total electric energy from that of geothermal origin, increasing at the moment from 3 to 19%. Finally, a comparison is made between electricity generating costs of different sources, showing that geothermal energy is competitive. A table illustrates the world evolution in installed geothermal capacity from 1950 to 1985. The non-electric uses of geothermal energy, on the other hand, have a rather insignificant role in both the developing and industrialized countries. It is unlikely that geothermal energy will ever achieve a greater significance in this sector, with a few rare exceptions.
URL: http://https://www.journals.elsevier.com/geothermics
Subject general geothermics

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