When someone first told me you can get heat from the ground in February, I told him he was right loony. But I'll be darned if I didn't see it myself over to Edgar's place last winter, and it was right toasty.

Geothermal News

Geothermal Power for Maine

Welcome to Maine's conversation about geothermal heating, also called geo-transfer or geo-exchange.  We invite Maine's experts on geothermal heat to share their knowledge in this blog, and also invite anyone using or considering a geothermal system to share their experiences and questions.  Let's get the conversation rolling.....

GEO Gagnon Tranquility water-to-air ducted geothermal heat system

Photo credit: Water Energy Distributors: water-to-air ducting

Federal Renewable Energy Tax Credits Extended 5 Years
12/26/2015 - 10:59am

solar panels image courtesy of the humble farmerOn December 15, 2015, the US Congress approved an extension of the Residential Renewable Tax Credit, originally set to expire at the end of 2016, for another five years. The tax credit enables homeowners and small businesses to claim 30% of the cost of solar, small wind, fuel cell and geothermal systems against their taxes. 

Read more about the tax credit from the US Department of Energy. Read Senator Charles Schumer’s announcement of the extension in the Westfield Republican.

Image courtesy of the humble Farmer.

Maine National Guard Battalion Opens Solar Facility
11/25/2015 - 4:35pm

The readiness center of the Maine National Guard 133rd Engineering Battalion photo courtesy of Maine National GuardThe new, LEED Silver readiness center for the 133rd Engineering Battalion of the Maine National Guard at Brunswick Landing opened in September 2015. Following new National Guard regulations to build energy efficiency and renewable energy into all new projects, the $23.5 million building boasts 38 KW of solar capacity, geothermal heating wells, LED lighting and a living roof growing blueberries.

Read more about it in the Sun Journal.

E2Tech Hosts its First Expo Oct. 1
09/28/2015 - 9:45pm

Environmental and Energy Technology Council of Maine E2TechThe Environmental & Energy Technology Council of Maine (E2Tech) and its partners are pleased to host the inaugural E2Tech Expo on October 1, 2015. Events include keynotes from a Fortune 50 company and a venture capital firm; its first-ever “E2Tech Talks” on Maine’s local and global food movements; a high-level plenary panel on cleantech markets, technologies, and public policies; workshops on energy policy, workforce development & career connections, sustainability in the supply chain, and cluster development and seed funding; and dozens of tables featuring environmental and energy companies, products, services, and resources.

You may see the agenda and register here.

Maine Islanders Study Danish Energy Ways
01/18/2015 - 6:22pm

Samso Island, Denmarks Energy Academy photo courtesy of Samso Energy AcademyIn October of 2014, a group of 5 Mainers from Peaks and Monhegan Islands and 15 College of the Atlantic students traveled to Denmark's Samso Island to attend the Samso Energy Academy and learn about their "Fossil-Free Island" project.

Samso Island is becoming energy independent by using wind and solar power and geothermal and biomass heat. Read a great New York times article that details what they learned there.

Image: Samso Energy Academy photo courtesy of Samso Energy Academy.

UMaine Farmington Trustees Approve Fourth Geothermal Project
03/05/2013 - 4:19pm

the education center at University of Maine at Farmington boasts a geothermal heating and cooling system.Trustees for the University of Maine at Farmington gave the green light to a $1.5 million project to heat and cool 50,000 square feet of campus building space using geothermal technology. This fourth geothermal system on the campus will help it to meet its Climate Action Plan goal of eliminating its greenhouse gas emissions by 2035 and reducing its GHG output by 20 percent by 2015.

Read more in the Portland Press Herald, in Mainebiz or on UMF's website.

Photo credit: University of Maine Farmington.

New Year Brings New Director of Governor's Energy Office
01/03/2013 - 12:57pm

Patrick Woodcock, the Director of Maine's Governor's Energy OfficeKenneth Fletcher has resigned his post as the Director of the Governor's Energy Office and Patrick Woodcock of Hampden, who most recently served as Senator Snowe's senior adviser for energy and environment issues will succeed him on January 7, 2013.

Woodcock, a 2004 graduate of Bowdoin College, faces an uphill challenge to fill Fletcher's shoes, as reported in the Portland Press Herald.

Portland Jetport Earns LEED Gold Certification
06/28/2012 - 12:13pm

The Portland International Jetport announced on June 27, 2012 that it has earned the gold status under the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating program for building efficiencies.  A new geothermal heating and cooling system contributed to the building's score to help it reach the gold rating under the program.

Read more in Mainebiz.

Fracking Wells Closed in Wake of Earthquake
01/04/2012 - 1:09pm

Ohio's Natural Resources Department has ordered the indefinite closure of four wells used for hydraulic fracturing or fracking, a controversial process for extracting of natural gas, in the wake of a series of small and one magnitude 4.0 earthquake in and around Youngstown in recent weeks. 

"They will (not open) until we are satisfied that the process can be safely resumed," said Andy Ware, a spokesman for the department.

Over 44% of Maine's electricity is generated from natural gas, so we may be complicit in causing these quakes. See the full article on CNN.

Maine Citizens for Clean Energy Forms to Float 2012 Ballot Initiative
10/28/2011 - 12:26pm

A coalition of businesses and organizations gathered in Bangor on October 27, 2011 to launch a petition drive to put a ballot initiative on the 2012 ballot that would require Maine’s utilities to get 20 percent of their power from renewable energy sources by 2020.

“In Maine, as in much of the country, construction work has taken the brunt of this Great Recession,” said Hermon resident Scott Cuddy, a journeyman electrician. “We need help now. We do not want a handout, we want a job. Our jobs come from projects. When a new area of development is identified, we need to exploit that area as soon as we can. Alternative energy generation is just such a field.”

Read all about it in the Bangor Daily News or in Mainebiz.

DOE Invests in Geothermal Technology
06/09/2011 - 11:42am

On June 8, 2011, U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the availability of up to $70 million in new funding over three years for technology advancements in geothermal energy to accelerate development of this energy resource. By funding research to develop innovative technologies to locate geothermal energy resources and improvements in resource characterization, drilling, and reservoir engineering techniques, the DOE aims to reduce the upfront cost of geothermal energy systems, expand their use, and enable the United States to tap the huge potential of this renewable energy resource.

 Read the press release on the DOE website. This is a competitive funding opportunity.  See the solicitation and application instructions on the Funding Opportunity Exchange.