Geothermal energy

The Geysers geothermal plant

Heat generated in the core of the earth travels upwards where it can be used to generate electricity as well as for heating and cooling via highly efficient geothermal heat pumps. Geothermal energy is clean, renewable, and we won’t run out of it for millions of years.

The photo shows one of The Geysers geothermal plants in northern California, which generates more electricity than any other geothermal plant anywhere.

The Geothermal Energy Association lists sites in California and explains how it works.

Geysers Geothermal Association

2 Responses to Geothermal energy

  1. Ralph Bassfeld Fri, Jan 19, 2007 at 6:37 am #

    If you would like to read an introduction to geothermal energy extraction methods for heat/cooling and for electricity generation, then please visit to download a short 10 page document on this subject.

  2. digforjuice Sun, Jan 21, 2007 at 9:14 pm #

    Just to help put this method of power generation in perspective. The first geothermal power plant was put into operation in Italy around about 1902. It has served continuously, except for in World War II when the Allied soldiers blew it up to keep the Italian army from having access to the power source. That plant has since then been repaired, upgraded and renewed. It continues to operate today.

    Geothermal provides more megawatt hours of power than both solar and wind combined. This is true, because geothermal power plants operate 24 hours a day no matter whether the wind blows or the sun shines.

    How much geothermal energy is currently supplied to the U.S.? In 2003, geothermal was the third largest source of renewable energy in the United States. The United States has nearly 2800 megawatts of electricity connected to the grid.(1) As the world’s largest producer of geothermal energy, The U.S. generates a yearly average of 15 billion
    kilowatt hours of power, comparable to burning about 25 million barrels of oil or 6 million short tons of coal per year or 150 billion cubic
    feet of natural gas.(2) The availability of renewable resources in the U.S. varies significantly by region. In areas where geothermal resources are available, such as California, the percentage of electricity derived from geothermal sources can exceed 7 times the national electricity average. Most geothermal production is concentrated in the western states.
    In California, the state with the largest amount of geothermal power on-line, electricity from geothermal resources accounted for 5 percent of the state’s electricity generation in 2003 on a per kilowatt hour basis.
    (3) Geothermal is the largest non-hydro renewable energy source in the state, nearly equaling the combined total of all other renewable sources of electricity, excluding large scale hydro.
    Thank you Geo-energy org

    For more information, see http;//