The 38th session of the UNU-GTP opened on Tuesday 19th of April, with 34 UNU graduates from the six month specialized courses. The Fellows came from 15 countries: Bolivia (1), China (1), Djibouti (2), Ecuador (1), El Salvador (1), Ethiopia (2), Hungary (6), Iran (1), Kenya (8), Mongolia (1), Romania (4), Rwanda (1), Tanzania (3), Uganda (1), and Vietnam (1). This is the first time Hungary participates in the Six Month Programme. The Fellows were trained in: Geothermal Utilization (7), Reservoir Engineering and Borehole Geophysics (5), Project Managing and Finances (5), Chemistry of Thermal Fluids (4), Geothermal Geology (4), Geophysical Exploration (3), Environmental Science (2), and Drilling Technology (4).
From 1979-2016, 647 scientists and engineers from 60 countries have completed the annual six month training. They have come from countries in Africa (38%), Asia (35%), Central and Eastern Europe (12%), Latin America (15%), and Oceania (1%). Amongst these have been 141 women (22%). Since 2000, 51 have graduated with MSc. Six MSc Fellows graduated in early 2016. One continues his studies since 2014 and is estimated to graduate in 2017. Four MSc Fellows commenced their studies in September 2015 and are estimated to graduate in 2017. Six Fellows started their MSc studies in 2016 and are estimated to graduate in 2018. One defended her PhD thesis in September 2016 and one started her PhD studies. Two continue their PhD studies.
The aim of the UNU Geothermal Training Programme is to assist in establishing groups of specialists in selected institutions in developing countries with significant geothermal potential. Priority is given to candidates from countries where geothermal exploration and development is already under way.
Of the 647 graduates from 1979-2016, the largest groups of Fellows have come from Kenya (117), China (85), the Philippines (40), El Salvador (39), Ethiopia (38), and Indonesia (29).
The group of Kenyan Fellows is an example of successful capacity building. The group consists of:
- 24 Geologists
- 18 Chemists
- 17 Drilling engineers
- 15 Geophysicists
- 14 Geothermal engineers
- 12 Reservoir engineers
- 12 Environmental specialists
- 4 Project managers
The former Kenyan UNU Fellows are staff members of government institutions, municipal energy utilities and universities. Many of the Fellows are in the forefront of geothermal research and development in the country. Kenya has ambitions goals for geothermal development and is planning to generate about 5,000 MWe by 2030.