Having hit rock bottom in 2008 as its banking system collapsed and it had to declare bankruptcy, Iceland is picking itself up and now exists of a modern model of the kind of sustainable economy that most European countries can only dream of achieving.
Iceland has become an attractive destination for energy investors and energy intense industries, a result of its cheap, 100% renewable energy supply, which has helped to slash carbon emissions and eliminate fuel poverty.
UK politicians are still arguing over decarbonisation targets, which Iceland managed to sort out decades ago, and other energy policy debates such as rising gas prices, which Iceland has also managed to virtually immunise itself against.
Related article: Iceland Credits Green Energy for GDP Growth
Iceland’s renewable energy sector has advanced so far that it is even considering exporting excess renewable energy to Europe. Last year the UK and Iceland signed a memorandum of understanding to lay an interconnecting cable between the two countries that would allow the UK to import energy from Iceland. An especially attractive idea if Iceland continues with plans to use new deep geothermal drilling technology to increase its renewable energy generation capacity from 17GWh to 40GWh.
With the completion of the cable Icelandic power could provide a back-up to the UK’s offshore wind farms, and even allow the UK itself to export excess energy to other European countries.
By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com