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  US report finds sky is the limit for geothermal energy beneath us
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Last EditedRP  Jun 11, 2019 04:46pm
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AuthorScott K. Johnson
News DateTuesday, June 11, 2019 07:05:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionThe technology used in natural gas fracking—injecting pressurized fluid underground to form fractures in the rock that released trapped gas into horizontally drilled wells—could be adapted to generate electricity in sites like these. Creating fractures and/or injecting water to get heated by these rocks eventually results in a similar geothermal plant setup, but it takes a lot more engineering than just jamming a straw into a source that's already sending hot water to the surface.

Advancing enhanced geothermal techniques alone could produce 45 gigawatts of electricity by 2050. Add in the more conventional plants, and you’re at 60 gigawatts—26 times more than current geothermal generation. And in a scenario where natural gas prices go up, making geothermal even more competitive, we could double that to 120 gigawatts. That would be fully 16 percent of the total projected 2050 generation in the US.
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