The earth’s crust is a rich source of energy and fossil fuels are only part of the story. Thermal energy or heat is stored deep inside the earth. To put it in perspective, the heat in the upper ten kilometers of the Earth’s crust is 50000 times the energy of all oil and gas reserves in the world!
The word “geothermal” literally means “Earth” plus “heat. Geothermal Resources is the largest source of energy worldwide and used by people for centuries.
This is a renewable resource and can be produced over and over again for years to come since earth has abundant amount of heat energy stored inside it, therefore it will not disrupt the ecological balance of our planet.
Geothermal power plants operating around the world are proof that the heat inside the earth is easily converted to electricity in geologically active areas.
Many municipalities, companies, universities and government agencies in the western United States fetch directly to the hot water from underground reservoirs. For owners of a house or building anywhere in the United States, the emergence of geothermal heat pumps brings the benefits of geothermal energy at their doorstep.
Deep underground there are rivers just like on the surface. They are really hot, as the magma is close to the river or around them, warming the surface of the rock.
Geothermal energy works by drilling holes in the underground river and extraction of groundwater to the surface. Once at the surface this hot water is circulated through pipes over an additional pipe containing a fluid that has a lower boiling point.
This low boiling point means that the steam will be capable of powering turbines to produce electricity. After the couple used to drive turbines, condensed and recycled back into the system.
Recirculation of liquid water means that geothermal energy is a renewable energy source and produce low emissions. Geothermal energy produce few emissions harmful gases as the water contains small quantities of nitric acid, sulfur and other contaminants that causes low pollution.
However, the amount released is less than 1% of carbon emitted or other conventional energy sources.
There are many advantages of geothermal energy. It is pure: geothermal energy plants do not have to burn fuel to produce steam turbines, which will help conserve and reduce consumption of non-renewable fossil fuels, which in turn reduces emissions of greenhouse gases.
Moreover, geothermal plants use less land per megawatt than almost any other kind of energy that does not damage the environment through dams and mining.
Geothermal plants are reliable and can be used 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Because geothermal power plant sits on top of the fuel source, they are less prone to the interventions in the production of electricity due to weather, natural disasters or issues of transport; therefore it is ideal for developing countries.