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Orlando, A Sustainable Beacon

Posted by Jay Egg

Dec 13, 2016 2:47:11 PM

NO MATTER WHAT SIDE OF THE FENCE WE'RE ON WITH CLIMATE CHANGE, the definition of “Sustainable Development” speaks to our collective hearts:

“Sustainable Development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”

What are the needs of the present and the future? When speaking of sustainable buildings, we need:

  • Buildings in which we can work, live and play
  • Buildings that are energy efficient with cost effective measures throughout
  • Buildings and systems that are long lasting
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If NYC Can Do Geothermal, Anybody Can Do Geothermal

Posted by Jay Egg

Jan 22, 2016 10:46:10 AM

LET'S FACE IT, WE ARE CREATURES OF HABIT, and when we get used to paying a certain amount for utilities, and become accustomed to replacing our air-conditioners every 10 or 15 years, why mess with the status quo? Want proof? Consider the metric system. It seems that in the US, it takes a couple of generations of adaptation, and then significant arm twisting to pull us out of our habitual comfort zones.

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Geothermal Infrastructure; Pay Your Heating Bill to the Water Company?

Posted by Jay Egg

Oct 6, 2015 9:06:00 AM

THE DAY IS COMING IN WHICH CITIES will no longer allow combustion heating (NYC 80X50; #ONENYC).  Cities and governments throughout the world have already, and continue to make similar commitments. There is only one power alternative to combustion heating; electric power.  Consider the increasingly renewables-powered electrical grid and we find that there are only two non-combustion choices available; electrical resistance heating and heat pump technology. 

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Geothermal Heating and Cooling Book; Real Cheap, Really Good!

Posted by Jay Egg

Aug 6, 2015 12:18:00 PM

IN MY EFFORTS TO GET UNDERSTANDABLE and easy to read information into the hands of consumers about green technologies, it is refreshing to see an affordable book come out on geothermal heating and cooling technologies. The new book, “Geo Power” is just that; affordable, understandable, and richly illustrated.

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Geothermal Heat Pumps for the Kids

Posted by Jay Egg

Jun 2, 2015 7:40:00 AM

“Within your lifetime, the house you live in will probably be heated and cooled by geothermal energy.”-Geothermal Day Website


Renwable Energy; YES!   Metric Marvels; Not so much...

OLD HABITS DIE-HARD. Many of us can remember when the public school system curriculum began metric instruction.  In 1970, I was a student at Skyline Elementary in Barstow, CA.  I distinctly remember Mrs. Sims sharing the Metric System with us in 1st grade, stating that by the time we were in high school, the Old-English measurements of miles, pounds, and pints would be all but history. What happened?

I also remember the promise of electric cars, on-line shopping (they called it “TV shopping”) and solar energy; all by the time we were in high school. I’m pleased to see that even though it’s taken a bit longer (45 years later), most of those energy efficiency initiatives have become a reality. I don’t know what to say about the metric system...

One of the forms of renewable energy that is enjoying widespread acceptance (unlike the “Metric Marvels”) is geothermal; so much so that we are have remarkable interest at elementary and upper-grade level studies.  I get increasing numbers of requests from kids all over the country for information that they can use in reports and essays on geothermal heat pump (GHP) technologies.  That’s great news.

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Geothermal HVAC and the “Negatherm” Factor

Posted by Jay Egg

May 15, 2014 12:59:00 PM


In our first geothermal book, Geothermal HVAC, Green Heating and Cooling (McGraw-Hill Professional, 2010, p16), Brian Clark Howard and I shared a dialogue from an article wherein a commenter said that switching from a gas furnace to ground sourced heating is increasing the burning of fossil fuels, because the power plant producing the electrical power is probably burning coal, natural gas or other fossil fuels.  The argument seems valid until you understand what we call the “Negatherm Factor”.

 “Negatherm” is a term that was coined to refer to energy that would or could have been used from fossil fuel consumption, but was never used.  “Nega”, root of “negative”, meaning unused, and “Therm”  a unit of energy equal to 100,000 BTU’s, usually measures the combustion of fossil fuels for heating a home or business.  When heating from an appliance using electricity, we use “kilo-watt-hours” (kWh).  Electricity comes from many different fuel sources including hydroelectric, solar, wind, hot rock geothermal, nuclear, natural gas, coal, and diesel to name a few.  We are certainly seeing an increase in the renewable sources, the first four in particular.

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Geothermal Heating and Cooling Systems; Great for the Environment!

Posted by Jay Egg

Apr 21, 2014 12:21:00 PM

Geothermal Heating and Cooling Systems; Great for the Environment!

An earth coupled HVAC system is packed with "Earth Friendly" benefits, especially when compared with any other types of air-conditioning and heating systems. As heating and cooling systems go, a ground sourced system comes closest to the way Mother Nature would heat and cool your home if given the opportunity.


That's because with geothermal, your house becomes coupled with the Earth beneath, sharing that temperature with your environmentally friendly geothermal heat pump, similar to the way the roots of trees share nutrients with their branches and leaves. Take a look at some of the environmental benefits you can enjoy with geothermal system:

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Get Your Spring-Time Energy Savings with Geothermal Pool Heating

Posted by Jay Egg

Apr 2, 2014 12:53:00 PM

SPRING IS HERE, and the cooling season is quickly approaching. Pools that have been out of commission for the winter are likely to stay that way unless we turn the heat on.  That can get expensive.


Stop for a moment and think of how many blow dryers, computers, cooking appliances, lights and people there are in your home that add to the cooling load.  These are all a potential source of energy that can provide domestic hot water and be used to heat spas and pools. With standard air source heat pumps or air conditioners, the heat generated inside your home typically goes out the return air ductwork and ultimately is exhausted through outside air exchange.

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Affordable Green

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Oct 9, 2013 9:10:00 AM

THE ST. CROIX VALLEY HABITAT FOR HUMANITY Eco Village, River Falls, Wisc., teamed up with local and national companies to build truly affordable and really green homes for Habitat families.

Four families are about to move into their Eco Village homes in what will be an 18-home Habitat Community built on five acres. River Falls donated the land, which is near public transportation as well as pedestrian and bike paths. Eco Village will include a community center, community gardens, and walkways as well as photovoltaic solar on each home and a shared geothermal system to heat the homes. Much of the landscape will also be edible. The goal is to achieve carbon negativity and net-zero energy use.

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Geothermal Heat Pump

Posted by Tom Miller

Aug 2, 2012 1:09:00 PM

News flash: Geothermal heat exchange systems ARE NOT a source of renewable energy. And it’s OK with me.

LATELY THERE HAVE BEEN A NUMBER OF ARTICLES and blogs questioning the efficiency and energy savings of geothermal (ground source heat pump) systems. Several of these articles “exposed” the shocking fact that these systems are not renewable energy sources like wind, solar and hydroelectric.

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Couple of Things About Energy Consumption

Posted by Tom Miller

May 19, 2011 10:59:00 AM

Finally, some numbers to crunch. 

IT'S NOW BEEN A YEAR SINCE the insulation, geothermal system and building envelope sealing have been completed on our 50-year-old home in Indianapolis. Enough time to see the effects on energy consumption across all four seasons.

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An Update on the Geothermal System

Posted by Tom Miller

Jul 6, 2010 8:34:00 AM

WITH ALMOST TWO MONTHS OF HOT, HUMID INDIANA WEATHER since the geothermal system was installed, we couldn’t be more pleased with the results. Utility bills are going down and the comfort level in the home has improved dramatically.

In the past when the weather got into the mid-to-upper 80s, with the humidity not too far behind, we’d set the thermostat on 70 degrees, and be cool, but “clammy”. Now we set the main zone in the home at 75 degrees and the second (less used part of the home) on 77 degrees, and we’re totally comfortable, without the clammy feeling. That’s because the humidity is controlled via the Whirlpool dehumidifier to stay below 50% relative humidity.

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How Green is Geothermal Heating?

Posted by Matt Power, Editor-In-Chief

Jun 24, 2010 8:01:00 AM

THE LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT STUDY LOOKED AT SHALLOW GEOTHERMAL LOOP INSTALLATIONS, and found that the efficiency, when compared with conventional electric or fossil fuel-powered HVAC systems ranged from -31 percent (worse) to 88 percent (almost twice as efficient).

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