US supermajor Chevron has made a $25 million investment in Baseload Capital, a Sweden-based private investment company that develops and operates low-temperature geothermal and heat power assets.
The investment follows hot on the heels of Chevron's investment in a Canadian deep geothermal start-up, Eavor.
Baseload said the two parties have already signed a letter of intent to investigate a potential pilot project in California in the US to test new technology for heat power, which is renewable energy that can be harnessed from either geothermal resources or waste heat.
In addition, Baseload and Chevron will look for commercial heat power opportunities in common regions where Chevron operates.
Baseload currently operates in Japan, Taiwan, Iceland and the US, and as the company further develops in these regions and expands to new markets, it will work with Chevron to look for commercial geothermal and heat power opportunities.
Baseload chief executive Alexander Helling said: “In August, we announced that we were looking for a new strategic investor to help us accelerate deployment in our key markets. We couldn’t have asked for a better one.
"Chevron complements our group of owners and adds expertise in drilling, engineering, exploration and more. These assets are expected to accelerate our ability to deploy heat power and strengthen our way of working.”
Chevron Technology Ventures (CTV) will join Baseload's existing shareholders, Breakthrough Energy Ventures and Swedish player Gullspang Invest.
Chevron described this deal — along with the supermajor's decision last month to invest in Eavor, a Canadian geothermal company — as expanding its "capacity to gain insight into geothermal innovations such as low-temperature power generation and closed-loop geothermal technologies".
Barbara Burger, Chevron’s head of innovation and CVT president, said: “Chevron’s investments in geothermal power reflect our ongoing focus on helping to advance the world’s transition to a lower-carbon future.
"We look forward to working with Baseload and Eavor to expand geothermal resources in the US and internationally.”
CTV identifies externally developed technology with the potential to enhance the way Chevron produces and delivers affordable, reliable and ever-cleaner energy now and into the future.
CTV's investments in Baseload and Eavor are financed by its 'core venture' fund, which identifies companies with technology that can add efficiencies to Chevron’s core business in operational enhancement, digitalisation and lower-carbon operations.