- The State of Colorado has recently begun work on a bill to promote the development of geothermal energy production within the state
- Currently, geothermal plants provide less than 0.5% of the United States’ electricity output despite lacking the weather-related or sunshine-linked challenges faced by other renewable energy sources
- Companies such as GeoSolar Technologies have sought to capitalize upon geothermal energy’s constant, clean energy output within their home energy systems
- Industry leaders have now called for geothermal energy production to benefit from a similar subsidy programme as was granted to wind and solar power in prior years
In early March, the United States’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a report summarizing the key findings of their Sixth Assessment Cycle. Within the report lays a dire warning; world leaders would have to slash greenhouse gas emissions by up to 60 percent by 2035 to have a 50 percent chance of limiting global warming to 15 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, thus staving off sever climate impacts (https://ibn.fm/9gXY0). The State of Colorado is seeking to address that challenge head-on. During a recent workshop held in conjunction with the 22-member Western Governors Association, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis revealed that the state government was exploring how to further promote the use of geothermal energy as source of electricity.
“Anything we can do to reduce time and cost associated with being able to drill for the purposes of geothermal energy is something that we’re very excited about,” said Polis in an interview with Stateline. “There’s been great interest from other governors in the West” (https://ibn.fm/E6l9s).
Geothermal plants currently provide less than half a percent of the nation’s power, mostly concentrated in California and Nevada. At present, building new geothermal projects is much more expensive than building other renewables such as wind or solar farms; nonetheless, backers of the energy note that wind and solar became commercially competitive after decades of government support.
Geothermal plants provide a source of constant, on-demand electricity, also known as dispatchable generation. Plants pump steam or hot water drawn from wells hundreds or thousands of feet underground to power turbines. Unlike renewable energy technologies such as wind or solar farms however, the energy output from geothermal plants does not vary based on weather conditions or time of day, doing away with the expense of acquiring and maintaining the gargantuan batteries needed to store this power.
“To go all the way to 100% clean at the same time that we’re electrifying transportation, buildings, and industry — if you wanted to do it purely through wind and solar, you’d have to overbuild the system pretty significantly,” said Will Toor, executive director of the Colorado Energy Office. “You need something to complement that, to close that last gap, and geothermal is one of the very promising technologies there.”
GeoSolar Technologies (“GST”), a Colorado-based climate technology company pioneering an approach into clean energy solutions for households has based its technological innovations along a similar logic. Whilst the company’s proprietary SmartGreen™ Home system – an environmentally friendly, renewable energy focused technological innovation which seeks to power homes through carbon free energy sources, makes use of solar technology and panels as part of their home system, the heart of the SmartGreen™ Home system lays within geothermal ground-based energy beneath the average home.
Through a truck-mounted or modular sonic rig, GeoSolar seeks to drill 4–6-inch wells down 300-400 feet below the surface, subsequently inserting high-density polyethylene pipe ground loops that can tap into the unlimited source of geothermal energy available. The ground loops operate the geothermal system function by constantly circulating non-toxic fluid to a high-volume heat/air pump. The heat pump and circulating fluid continuously transfer heat from the home into or out of the ground depending on the season. Moreover, the system can be easily connected to existing air ducts or radiant flooring loops, thereby accounting for all the home’s heating, cooling and hot water requirements.
Historically, the key barrier impeding the broader adoption of geothermal energy has centred around obstacles of a financial nature, given the higher capital costs needed to construct geothermal power plants (thereby leading to longer payback periods) relative to other forms of renewable energy. To address this issue, attendees at the recent Governor-sponsored workshop called for state and federal leaders to broaden the incentive programs and investments that have helped other renewables succeed.
“There are tax benefits for wind and solar that geothermal does not have the ability to enjoy,” said Johanna Ostrum, COO of Transitional Energy, a Denver-based company that produces geothermal power using existing oil and gas wells. “We’d like to see across-the-board support for renewable energy, especially sources that are dispatchable like geothermal.”
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.GeoSolarPlus.com.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to GeoSolar Technologies are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/GST
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