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“Demonstration” Defined: Putting the Newberry EGS Demonstration in Context

December 10, 2010

Though the science behind Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) has been in development since the 1970s, the Newberry EGS Demonstration is the most advanced implementation of this technology in a real-world setting. Careful planning, methodical execution, community involvement and an ideal geologic setting poise this project to make a significant breakthrough in the world of clean energy—emphasis on world, because its success would reach far beyond Alta Rock Energy and Davenport Newberry.

“Demonstration” isn’t just a title here; it’s the very purpose of the project. Scientists, academics, energy providers, municipalities, environmental advocates, and governmental organizations across the country are watching to see what will come of this project. It has the potential to show not only that EGS can be done, but that it can be done effectively, safely, and productively, to the benefit of local communities and the environment as a whole.

The Newberry EGS Demonstration isn’t the start of something new: it stands on the shoulders of more than three decades of geoscience and engineering research and development. But neither is it the final step: its success will be marked by the growth and development that springboard off the work done here. The ideal outcome of this demonstration is the creation of a system that can be replicated nationwide. The project is being pursued slowly, carefully, and methodically, but this larger purpose is the final outcome its planners are hoping for.

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