The Economist: Geothermal power sheds its hot-spring roots
GEOTHERMAL energy, long a poor relation among the more glamorous renewable technologies of wind and solar power, is poised to smarten its dowdy image. Piping-hot underground water and steam, percolating up through fissures in rocks fractured by seismic activity, have been a welcome feature of the European landscape since the Romans popularised bathing. On the other side of the globe, the Japanese have luxuriated since the Heian era in hot-spring onsen that dot their volcanic and quake-strewn archipelago. Even so, as a source of renewable energy, geothermal electricity has gone largely ignored as fortunes have been heaped on its rivals.
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