Geothermal power is a sustainable form of energy generated using steam produced with heat emanating from the Earth’s interior. Geothermal power facilities are situated where this heat reaches closest to the surface—i.e., areas that are geologically active in the long-term such as subduction zones, fault swarms, and volcanic complexes. Despite several geologically active areas in British Columbia where the heat of the Earth is accessible to generate power, Canada is currently the only country on the Pacific Rim that does not do so. The main reasons for this have been the availability of cheap and abundant hydroelectric power, as well as the tendency for the most geologically active areas to be remote and difficult to reach.
Building on research stretching back to the mid-1970s, the Garibaldi Geothermal Volcanic Belt Assessment Project is an ongoing effort to assess geothermal potential in a region of southwest British Columbia contained within the Fire& Ice Aspiring Geopark. This multi-partner collaboration employs a suite of modern geophysical and geological techniques and concepts that involve researchers from the Geological Survey of Canada and no less than seven universities. Major field research initiatives took place in 2019 and 2021, with more to come.
For more information and to view online presentations and updates:https://www.geothermalcanada.org/news/2020/5/11/
Proposed Mt. Meager geothermal plant takes another step towards operating.
Geosites of the Aspiring Geopark lie wholly within the unceded traditional territories of the Líl̓wat Nation and the Sk̲wx̲wú7mesh Nation. The nations have lived in—and shared parts of—these territories since time immemorial, with many landscape features and geological events woven into their cultural and oral histories. We are grateful for, and committed to, the opportunity to learn and share these perspectives of the land alongside its original stewards.
Would you like to receive updates, information from the Fire & Ice Geopark? Sign up for our newsletter now!