Geothermal power generation has been used all over the world and can be used for power generation of small and large power plants. It can be a local installation that powers a house to mega projects like those in Iceland that can power cities. In the USA there are two projects underway that are designed to test and demonstrate how easy and productive geothermal energy can be.
The first is a community-scale geothermal project in Massachusetts. We’ve heard a lot about community-scale solar PV projects, but community geothermal is also starting to emerge. New England Renewable Energy Systems has installed a community geothermal project in Provincetown, Massachusetts that uses a single loop field to heat and cool ten homes. The system has 19 vertical bores that supply 44 tons of geothermal heat pumps, or about 154 kilowatts of capacity. The challenge for community-scale geothermal, like community-scale renewables generally, is coordinating the investment among homeowners. But the benefit is clear: Homeowners participating in the program can pool their resources with others and save about $2,000 per year in heating costs from avoiding burning oil.