Geothermal Energy Facts
Geothermal energy facts will outline how this source of energy has been used, it's modern applications and it potential as a plentiful source of renewable energy to replace oil and coal.
Geothermal energy itself has been around since the earth was formed. Modern use of geothermal as a source of power for cities and homes is relatively new. In the past we were focused on using non-renewal energy sources like coal and oil, but as these sources are being depleted we have been forced to harness new sources of energy. Geothermal energy is in the category of alternative energy sources, which are natural and renewable energy.
In the beginning, geothermal energy was used naturally. Hot springs were one example of how geothermal energy worked to naturally heat up water. This water was used for bathing, cooking and medicinal uses. Today geothermal energy is being harnessed by drilling into the earth and collecting the energy. Using geothermal heat pumps, geothermal energy is collected and converted so that it can be used to heat and cool homes or heat water inside a home.
Geothermal energy is a clean and safe energy source. It does not produce pollution because no fuel is needed to operate the power plant or geothermal unit. This type of energy production is quiet and since it comes from underground, most of a geothermal heat pump used in homes is buried underground so it is aesthetically pleasing, too.
Amount of Energy Produced
In 1904, Italy was the first place to produce geothermal electricity. Now it is being done around the world. Less than 10,000 megawatts of geothermal electricity is produced world wide in 21 different countries. In the United States about 3000 megawatts of geothermal electricity is produced a year. On a smaller scale, more than one million geothermal heat pumps are in use in the US. There is enough geothermal energy to provide all the energy needs of the world.
Uses of Geothermal Energy
Geothermal energy can be used in many ways, not just to produce heating and cooling or electricity.
Here are some ways it has been used:
- grow plants in greenhouses
- in aquatic settings to speed up marine life growth
- piped in under roads and sidewalks to prevent ice formation
Geothermal energy is a very beneficial alternative energy source. Through advances in technology and more experimentation with usage, geothermal energy is quickly becoming a major alternative energy source. It is available around the world and is a reliable source. It is a promising energy source that has significant potential in the future of energy production around the world.
Geothermal energy facts demonstrate why it is such an interesting and plentiful energy source that is drawing attention from governments and homeowners around the world. As we continue to deplete the non-renewable energy sources we must find other sources of energy to use. We need options, like geothermal energy, because one day we will no longer be able to use coal and oil to heat our homes and provide us with electricity. As research continues, geothermal energy is likely to start being used on wider scales throughout the world and will probably come to an area near you, if it has not already.
Click here to leave Geothermal Energy Facts and Return to Geothermal Energy