Geothermal systems (ground source heat pumps) are central heating and/or cooling systems that transfer heat to or from the ground. The design takes advantage of the moderate temperatures underground to boost efficiency and reduce costs above ground. The heat does not come from the center of the Earth, but from the Sun. So why would the Energy Policy Act of 2005 fail to categorize it as “renewable?” It should be and encouraged by government.
This week, U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), senior member of the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, and Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) and senior member of the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, introduced an amendment to the Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness (ESIC) Act that would revise the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to categorize geothermal and other thermal sources of energy as renewable. Good for both people and the planet.
“I am pleased to work with Sen. Carper on this common sense, bipartisan amendment that will allow the federal government to meet its renewable energy quota by utilizing cost-effective geothermal energy,” said Inhofe. “The multiple benefits of geothermal are undeniable and in demand, but the Energy Policy Act of 2005 failed to classify it as renewable because it does not create new energy. This amendment makes an important, cost-free correction to the law.”
“This bipartisan amendment is a common-sense and simple fix that will help our agencies adopt effective and proven strategies to meet their energy needs in a clean, cost-efficient, and responsible way,” said Carper. “This measure would not only help agencies save money but also allow the federal government to lead by example in becoming more environmentally sustainable and less reliant on foreign sources of energy. That’s what I like to call a ‘win-win.’ I am proud to join Senator Inhofe in championing this amendment and I am hopeful our colleagues will join us in supporting it.”
Current federal purchase requirement of renewable energy limit safe, cost-effective energy production by excluding geothermal and other thermal sources. Amendment no. 2989 would encourage further development of America’s domestic energy capabilities by modifying the Energy Policy Act of 2005’s definition of renewable energy to include geothermal production.