The Economic Potential of Enhanced Geothermal Systems
AltaRock Energy’s Newberry EGS Demonstration presents several opportunities in America’s energy infrastructure. Most prominent is that of clean, domestic, renewable energy: something that the U.S. does not have nearly enough of, while the pressures to wean from foreign fossil fuels are higher than ever.
The other opportunities EGS offers are financial growth and jobs. The oft-quoted MIT study on EGS finds that, if appropriately developed, EGS has the potential to affordably supply one tenth of the nation’s energy needs in a timeline of fifty years. This means a new, cleaner network of power sources and family wage jobs to operate them, as well as more reliable fuel prices for homes and businesses across the country. Investment in EGS’- development is essential for these goals to be achieved, and its benefits will extend beyond those who invest, to the workforce and the economy at large.
While Google.org and a few others have led the way, investment in EGS is just starting to take off. Pike Research anticipates investment in geothermal power to rise by 134% between 2010 and 2020. In 2008, geothermal energy as a whole accounted for 25,000 jobs in the U.S. Even since then, EGS has gained prominence and funding. Assuming MIT’s predictions play out, Enhanced Geothermal Systems will not only provide 10% of American power in the coming decades, but a growing number of jobs and investment opportunities as well.