Geoexchange Systems: The Ultimate Guide

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What is the Geothermal Exchange Organisation and what do they do for geoexchange systems? Read on to learn more about the Geothermal Exchange Organisation (also referred to as GEO) and what they are doing to advance geothermal heat pump technology below.

The Geothermal Exchange Organization (GEO) is a non-profit trade association that advocates for the geothermal heat pump industry in the United States. The organisation promotes the design, installation and manufacture of geoexchange systems.

The organisation is dedicated to knocking down barriers to progress for geoexchange systems - especially when it comes to industry growth. GEO have been credited with increasing recognition for the renewable energy based benefits of geothermal heating systems - including their role in meeting future government energy and environment goals.

How do Geothermal Heat Pumps Work?

Geothermal heat pumps (also known as ground source heat pumps or geoexchange systems) use naturally occurring heat from the earth to produce heat for buildings, rather than using energy from fossil fuels. These pumps can also cool buildings, using the earth as a heatsink to cool things down.

Ground source heat pumps use solar energy and circular wells that pump water into the ground and back out again, gathering natural heat from the earth to heat the water passing through the pipes.

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Geoexchange Systems & Advocacy

GEO advocates for geoexchange systems - arguing that they are the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly cooling and heating systems available. The organisation does this by liaising with the public and the government to promote and monitor geoexchange systems.

Much of the success of geothermal heating in the US can be attributed to GEO, with their advocacy having increased tax credits for residential geothermal heat pump installations from $300 to 30% of system costs.

GEO has covered a lot of ground in terms of geoexchange advocacy, including the following:

  • The development of government policy and model geothermal heat pump legislation/regulations
  • The establishment of 30% residential and 10% commercial tax credits in the United States for geoexchange system installations
  • The development of potential consumer benefits linked to energy and climate change based legislation
  • The establishment of dedicated and well-funded government programs for geothermal heat pump promotion and research
  • The accelerated installation of geothermal heat pump systems in government buildings.
  • The development of grassroots support for geoexchange systems.

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GEO has forged strong partnerships with government agencies, industry associations and institutions in order to reach common goals and enhance the industry as a whole.

An example of the organisation’s partnerships is with The U.S. Department of Energy and National Laboratories where they standardized design and installation standards, and developed electronic tracking devices and databases for monitoring the quality and efficiency of geothermal heat pump systems.

Take a look at the table of geoexchange systems partnerships taken on by GEO below:

U.S. Department of Energy
International Ground Source Heat Pump Association
Geothermal Energy Association
Geothermal Resources Council
Air Conditioning Contractors of America
National Ground Water Association
American Ground Water Trust

Public Outreach

GEO uses public outreach programs aimed at increasing consumer awareness of geothermal systems. These public outreach efforts include the education of legislators about the many renewable energy advantages of geoexchange systems and the need for further residential and commercial tax credits for geothermal heat pump installations.

GEO’s public outreach programs also extends to the media, namely the promotion of geothermal heating through the sharing of information to help broaden the public's understanding of this kind of technology.

As part of their public outreach program, GEO also maintains a toll-free information hotline at 888)-255-4436.

Quality Standards

GEO works hard to maintain quality standards by developing best practices of geothermal heat pump installation training, certification and accreditation. The organisation also collaborates with the International Ground Source Heat Pump Association and a host of other organizations to promote the advancement and adoption of codes and standards.

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