Edenshaw Developments, a Canadian real estate developer, is working with Diverso Energy to design a geothermal energy system for Alba, a 32-story, 48-unit condo building in the suburbs of Toronto, that will emit 80% less carbon than a similar building heated by natural gas, as reported by Toronto Star. Occupancy is targeted for 2025.
Geothermal heat pumps are central heating and cooling systems that take advantage of the earth’s temperature — the inverse of external conditions — to provide renewable energy that heats and cools buildings. About 50,000 geothermal heat pumps are installed in the U.S. annually, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
High costs have historically constrained the geothermal renewable energy segment from growing. But that is changing. With alternative ways to pay for up front expenses, lower maintenance costs, and increasing regulations and pressure to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, geothermal systems are expected to grow.
The Alba will use a closed-loop geothermal system, one of four basic types of ground loop geothermal systems, with loops of fluid-filled tubing installed into 117 holes drilled 600 feet into limestone shale beneath the site.
“Edenshaw has a mission to be environmentally responsible and we are very concerned about how we build our buildings,” said Scott, managing director of Edenshaw Developments. “With Alba, we tried to create as gentle a carbon footprint as possible. The owner of Edenshaw, David McComb, has always expressed an interest in making all developments as sustainable and energy efficient as possible with features such as green roofs and electrical vehicle charging stations.”
“Any multi-residential building over 150 units is a good fit,” said Weber, CEO of Diverso Energy. “Buildings with conventional heating systems have boilers and cooling towers that have to be maintained, serviced and replaced in 20 years.” By comparison, a geothermal system can last up to 50 years, according to experts, and requires very little maintenance provided it is installed properly.
–> This post appeared first on Environment + Energy Leader.