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Energy in Iceland

Iceland is the only country in Western Europe that still has large resources of competitively priced hydroelectric power and geothermal energy remaining to be harnessed. Although electricity consumption per capita in Iceland is second to none in the world, at about 28,200 kWh per person, only a fraction of the countrys energy potential has been tapped. Total economically viable electric power potential is now estimated at 50,000 GWh/year. About 8,490 GWh/year of this power had been harnessed in 2003, i.e. only about 17% of the total electrical energy potential.

Competitively priced electricity has already attracted foreign investors to Iceland in fields such as production of aluminium and ferro-silicon. Export-orientated power-intensive industries now consume more than half the countrys electricity production.

Hydropower in Iceland
Economically harness able electricity from hydro resources is estimated at about 30,000 GWh per year. The first hydropower plant was constructed in 1904, generating 9kW. In 2003, the total installed hydropoweris 1,155 MW and thehydropower productionwas around 7,100 GWh. The largest single hydropower plant has aproduction power capacity of 270 MW.

Geothermal energy in Iceland
Icelanders are world leaders in the use of geothermal energy for domestic and industrial purposes. About 87% of the population enjoy central heating by geothermal energy at a price that is generally less than half of the comparable cost of oil or electric heating, thus contributing to making Iceland one of the cleanest environments in Europe. Geothermal steam has been used directly for a number of industrial processing applications in Iceland for decades now, and has also been developed for electricity generation on a small but growing scale. In 2003 the total installed geothermal electric power was 200 MW and the production around 1,420 GWh.

Icelandic Power without pollution
Both hydro and geothermal power are sustainable and supremely environment-friendly green resources which are free from the atmospheric emissions of fossil fuels and the potential hazards of radioactive power sources. In the case of aluminium production, using electricity generated by hydropower instead of coal will typically cut total emissions of CO2 by about 90% per ton of production. A recent venture backed by Daimler-Chrysler, Norsk Hydro and Shell has located one of the worlds first pilot projects for developing infrastructure of a hydrogen-driven transport system in Iceland, using hydropower to make an emission-free petrol substitute, sometimes called the energy source of the future.

Websites Related toEnergy in Iceland
Invest in Iceland Agency
Invest in Iceland Agency is an independent agency of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce promoting foreign direct investment to Iceland. The Agency's advisors provide free of charge information and expert confidential service on all aspects of investments.

The Federation of Icelandic Industries
The Federation of Icelandic Industries is the main organization of Icelandic employers in manufacturing industries, crafts, software production and related services. Membership consists of close to fifteen hundred enterprises ranging from small family businesses to Icelands largest industrial companies.

The Ministry of Industry and Commerce
The Ministry of Industry and Commerce has broad and extensive responsibilities concerning both domestic and global issues. Its objectives are to broaden the economic base of the country and improve the competitiveness of Icelandic industries by increasing diversification and the level of productivity

Brochures Related toEnergy in Iceland

Aluminiumin Iceland(1,5 MB)
A brochure about aluminium in Iceland.

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