Guest Post: Companies Already Benefitting from Geothermal Heating
Geothermal heating is becoming more popular. As well as homes, large buildings such as universities and hospitals are beginning to turn to geothermal heating, as it is both cost efficient and environmentally friendly.
Notable British universities have already begun to see the advantages of geothermal heating. One of the major universities in the East Midlands, De Montfort University in Leicester, commissioned simultaneous geothermal heating and cooling in January 2010. Months earlier, The New Howard Theatre, Downing College, part of the world renowned Cambridge University, also commissioned geothermal heating.
Kings Mill Hospital in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire boasts the largest open loop system in the world. Estimated savings of £120,000 for the NHS trust a year, and impressive reductions in CO2 emissions, means that other hospitals will be encouraged to consider geothermal energy in the near future.
Geothermal heating seems particularly popular with police stations, with Gloucester Police HQ, Leominster Police Station, and Kent Police Station being several stations to utilize this form of heating. In the case of Kent Police Station a reduction of energy bills by a third has resulted from switching to geothermal heating.
Both new and existing homes are benefiting from geothermal energy, and Greenwatt Way, Chavley is a development of zero carbon homes that incorporates geothermal heating. The homes are supplied with energy by a mini district heating system. Residential buildings in London also have geothermal heating. An apartment block in Embassy Court, London, for instance, is supplied with geothermal heating thanks to precision drilling. This underlines how both the dual benefits of green energy and lower energy bills are helping to spread the use of geothermal energy even in areas where installing it can be problematic.
The Chelsea Building Society HQ is another high profile building that makes use of geothermal energy. Using a vertical, closed loop system, this building was benefiting from geothermal energy as early as 2006.
The positives of installing geothermal heating are not just environmental and being able to reduce energy costs. For homeowners, a property can become more valuable with this type of heating installed. For all users of geothermal heating there is also peace of mind in the knowledge that it is also one of the more reliable energy sources. Because the type of rock that is used to extract geothermal energy will be in abundance, there is little fear of the energy source itself running out.
You can find more examples and cases studies of buildings which utilise geothermal heating technology at http://www.geothermalint.co.uk/