Enhanced Geothermal Systems: Promise or Peril?
In August, I wrote about geothermal energy prospects at The Geysers -- the world's largest geothermal field located just a couple hours north of Oakland -- and across the country in a feature story for the East Bay Express. In this month's High Country News, I drill down (get it?) on the topic a bit more by addressing the promise and challenges behind enhanced geothermal systems. It's a rather fascinating energy story: on one hand you've got a proven technology that can technically be used pretty much anywhere, the potential of providing more than 100% of the nation's baseline energy needs with extremely limited GHG emissions, and minimal environmental impacts. On the other you have a struggling industry that can't get a word in edgewise against natural gas and is being overcome by wind and solar in the renewables sector, a technology that's incredible expensive upfront but affordable to operate, and a real need for remote sensing technologies that will allow geothermal developers to see miles into the earth before they drill. Read more at High Country News, in my first piece for the publication.