California wants 1,700 MW of new geothermal; Colorado students; New York’s geothermal airport ramp; Texas’ leadership potential; Geo heating in Washington DC

U.S. state markets are making headway in geothermal activities. California’s IID has big news about the geothermal energy it needs to help in Salton Sea restoration plans. Colorado students studied the Pagosa Springs area, while a New York airport will get a geothermally heated aircraft ramp. SMU’s Maria Richards is all over the press talking about Texas’s unique position in the industry. And a housing complex will get geothermal heating in GEA’s home base of Washington, DC.

California: IID Initiative to Focus on 1,700 MW of New Geothermal Power
Colorado: Geophysics Students Study Pagosa Springs Area
New York: Greater Binghamton Airport to Geo-Heat Aircraft Ramp
Texas: State Could be Geothermal Leader, SMU Researcher Richards Says
Washington, DC: Plans for New Housing Complex Include Geothermal

U.S. state markets are making headway in geothermal activities. California’s IID has big news about the geothermal energy it needs to help in Salton Sea restoration plans. Colorado students studied the Pagosa Springs area, while a New York airport will get a geothermally heated aircraft ramp. SMU’s Maria Richards is all over the press talking about Texas’s unique position in the industry. And a housing complex will get geothermal heating in GEA’s home base of Washington, DC.

In a corner of California thick with geothermal facilities as well as enormous further potential for expanded geothermal development, the Imperial Irrigation District (IID) and Imperial County have reached an agreement on a long-term comprehensive $3 billion strategy to save the Salton Sea. The potential on the table for the industry is a whopping 1,700 MW of geothermal power that the regulators recognize is available and needed. They see that geothermal could help drive the area economy; IID’s general manager Kevin Kelley told press geothermal development could be worth at least $3 billion over 30 years, which would help pay for restoration efforts (Utsandiego.com). IID’s Web site notes, “Projects sited on exposed lakebed will serve a dual purpose: producing renewable energy while doubling as groundcover to mitigate air emissions” (Iid.com). The agreement also includes such environmental safeguards as a protected area for migratory waterfowl. See also Geoenergist.wordpress.com.

Students of Colorado School of Mines and Imperial College London participated in a two-week Geophysics Field Camp last May to map the Pagosa Springs geothermal resource. Students presented their project this week. Pagosadailypost.com

The Greater Binghamton Airport and NYSERDA are moving forward with a geothermal heating system to heat aircraft ramps. A press release explains further: “In 2010, Greater Binghamton Airport, in conjunction with Binghamton University (BU), submitted a proposal to the FAA to design and construct a prototype snow melting system in a portion of the Airport’s terminal pavements. This proposal was based on a submission by BU students in association with the 2009 National FAA Design Competition for Universities. In 2012, The Southern Tier Economic Partnership was granted $900,000 to design and construct the in-pavement systems.” Investorideas.com; Geo-energy.org, PDF

Maria Richards of Southern Methodist University’s Geothermal Lab was featured in an interview posted to Bizjournals.com. She discussed important issues such as convincing oil companies to think longer term and larger scale. She mentions specific sites: North Texas’ Barnett Shale, and Eagle Ford in South Texas. “Texas has the potential to be one of the largest geothermal producers in the nation, but its focus tends to be on gas and oil,” Richards is quoted. For more information on the work that SMU’s lab is doing, check out their recent blog post at Smudailycampus.com.

Richards will be speaking at next week’s Renewable Energy World Conference & Expo North America, co-located with Power-Gen International in Orlando, with GEA co-chairing geothermal sessions at the event. Geo-energy.org

A housing complex in Washington, DC will be built with energy efficient features including a geothermal heating system. In October, the DC board of zoning adjustment approved special requests regarding the parcel of land where the building will sit. Elevationdcmedia.com

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