Geothermal energy is heat that comes from the earth. Many technological advances have been undertaken in recent years to take advantage of this heat source. Geothermal heat pumps can draw into the upper ten feet or so of the Earth’s surface and utilize the heat found there, while other technologies can delve even deeper. This heat can then be used in a variety of different ways, ranging from heating buildings to generating electricity. There are several advantages to using geothermal energy, from the fact that it is environmentally friendly to the fact that it is a very efficient source of energy.
Like fossil fuels, geothermal energy is processed in plants. Unlike fossil fuel plants, however, there is no combustion in a geothermal energy plant. These plants tend to release a very small amount of greenhouse gasses. The EPA, or Environmental Protection Agency, has a wide variety of information available about geothermal energy. This page highlights the fact that geothermal energy is a renewable resource, meaning that it is environmentally friendly and more widely available. Because geothermal energy is taken from the core of the earth itself, it will be available to use as long as the earth itself exists.
There are very few pieces of a geothermal system that move, and most of the parts of the system will be kept inside a building. This means that the building is sheltered and increases the life span of the system. The pipes can have warranties of up to fifty years, and the pumps can last for as long as twenty years. Other than an occasional check and changing the filter from time to time, there is not much maintenance required.
The EPA points out that the heat pumps that can access the top ten feet of the Earth’s surface can be used anywhere in the United States. The other systems are a little more difficult to access and are therefore dependent on location. When it comes to using geothermal energy, the heated surface of the world is not limited to just one place; it can be found everywhere. The only limits to using this energy source is the ability that people and companies have to extract and use the heat. A press release by PR Marketer discusses the work being done by companies like Alternative Energy Advisors to help this industry grow, making it more accessible.
While it can be expensive to set up a geothermal heating and cooling system, the long-term costs are much lower. Some have estimated that a home owner will save somewhere between thirty and sixty percent on heating costs, and between twenty-five and fifty percent on cooling. This is a large amount, and many have suggested that this is well worth it. In addition to lower long-term costs in utilities, a geothermal energy system is also a system that is fairly low maintenance.
In many places all over the world, countries are looking for additional sources of energy. Geothermal energy is a source of energy that is looked at very favorably, because it is a renewable energy source that is available in most places.