Geothermal use database
This interactive web map shows the utilisation of New Zealand’s abundant geothermal resources by use type (see categories below).
Existing uses include electricity generation, timber drying, paper and pulp processing, space heating, bathing, milk drying, greenhouse heating, prawn cultivation, process tourism, and geothermal heat pumps.
Electricity generation is the primary market of geothermal energy. In direct-use, industrial processes consume more energy than the other categories. However, the most common use of direct geothermal energy is for bathing purposes.
The best place to utilise a geothermal resource is in close proximity to the extraction point. Therefore, geothermal resources can be treated as valuable assets for economic development for their respective regions and districts.
This database and application are a work in progress and not all data will be complete. Please contact us to share your data or feedback comments.
Electricity Generation Using the geothermal fluid to power a steam turbine for electricity generation for the national power-grid.
Direct-Use A range of applications that directly utilise the thermal (heat) energy of the resource without conversion to electrical, chemical, or mechanical energy.
Geothermal heat pump Harness the stored heat in rocks, soils, groundwater and surface water for water heating and space conditioning.
Learn more at GNS Science's Earth Energy website.
Electricity Generation: Geothermal power stations – large and small, binary and flash/steam.
Aquaculture: Rearing fish, eels, prawns etc in ponds.
Agriculture: Greenhouses and open ground heating of flowers and edible crops; animal husbandry.
Bathing: Balneology; commercial pools and spas; free geothermal swimming sites.
Industrial process heating: Timber and pulp/paper processing; and food processing (e.g. honey, food drying, brewing, pasteurisation).
Geothermal tourism: Commercial operations and non-commercial sites.
Space heating/cooling: District heating schemes; commercial and residential space and water heating/cooling.
Geothermal (ground-source) heat pumps: commercial and residential space, hot water and pool heating/cooling.