Report Boosts Understanding of Geothermal Potential in Mount Cayley Area

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Vancouver, BC – April 26 2022 – Geothermal energy potential in the Mount Cayley area can be better understood thanks to a new Geoscience BC report and data examining the geology and ground temperature.

Stable, renewable energy sources, such as geothermal, have the potential to help Canada to meet its target of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The new report and data are from 2021 field work for the Garibaldi Geothermal Volcanic Belt Assessment Project, and will help boost geothermal exploration and development in the area, and other volcanic belts in BC. Mount Cayley is in British Columbia’s Southwest Region and is approximately 20 km west of Whistler.

“This research is essential to informing decisions and encouraging investment in this renewable resource. Baseline geoscience information about the depth, temperature and permeability of potential aquifers helps us to understand their suitability to generate geothermal heat and power,” said project lead and Geological Survey of Canada Research Scientist Dr. Steve Grasby.

The new data will be used to produce a three-dimensional model of the rocks, faults, and aquifers in the Mount Cayley area. The project is funded by Natural Resources Canada and Geoscience BC, and includes researchers from Carleton University, Douglas College, the Geological Survey of Canada, Simon Fraser University, University of Alberta, University of British Columbia and University of Calgary. Field support has been provided by Líl̓wat and Squamish (Sḵwx̱wú7mesh) First Nations.

Geoscience BC Manager, Energy and Water Randy Hughes said: "This research plays an important role as Canada seeks to develop renewable energy sources with low environmental footprints. It can guide geothermal energy producers, communities, governments, and Indigenous groups to a better understanding of the potential geothermal resource throughout the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt and beyond.”

A first phase of the project focused on the area around Mount Meager, near Pemberton. 2021 field work is part of a second phase of research around Mount Cayley and included dating of bedrock, gravity, magnetotelluric and ground temperature surveys. Full results and interpreted data of Phase 2 of this project will be released following the 2022 field season.

Next steps
Geoscience BC members will have the opportunity to guide future phases of geothermal research in the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt. Corporate, Individual, Student and Associate memberships are designed to help industry, academia, communities, Indigenous groups and governments to achieve shared goals. More information can be found at

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Accessing information
To view the reports and maps, visit the project page or view the information on Geoscience BC's Earth Science Viewer online mapping application.

View project page          View project in Earth Science Viewer

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For more information, please contact:
Richard Truman
Geoscience BC
604-662-4147 / 778-929-1662