Geothermal lease meeting sees standing crowd in Colorado

Alexander Richter 18 Jan 2010

A geothermal lease meeting sees strong attendance at a BLM meeting in Colorado, U.S.

Reported in local media, “The geothermal lease-sale meeting Thursday night drew a standing-room-only crowd to the Buena Vista Community Center.

Greg Shoupe, U.S. Bureau of Land Management Front Range district manager, opened the meeting by explaining the meeting was to provide information, not accept public comment.

He said this is the first time the process has occurred in Colorado because of changes initiated by the 2005 Energy Policy Act.

He said, “We want you to understand what it’s all about. We’re here as long as you guys want us to be here.”

Shoupe encouraged anyone with comments, especially negative comments, to include specific facts or data the bureau can consider because new information from public comments can give the bureau reasons to change leasing decisions. “This process is a long way from over,” Shoupe said.

He added it is impossible to provide information about how the resource will be developed because the lease does not guarantee development.

Matt Sares, deputy director of the Colorado Geological Survey, presented geothermal information about geothermal technology and geothermal features of Colorado and Chaffee County.

His report, “Geothermal Energy in the Heart of the Rockies,” is available at under “2009 Sustainability Summit.”

Sares indicated the Mount Princeton location is suited to binary-cycle technology such as is in use in Steamboat, Nev., and in Alaska, where plants are generating electricity with 165-degree water.

He described benefits of a binary-cycle power plant, including no mining of fossil fuel, no transportation of fuel and no atmospheric emissions.

Binary-cycle plants, he explained, require high heat and high water flow, but don’t consume any water like natural gas and coal-powered plants.

Sares indicated a 10-megawatt plant would require about 5 acres with an additional 3 acres for piping.

National geothermal program manager Kermit Witherbee of the Bureau of Land Management, explained heat is classified as a mineral resource, which is the basis for the lease-sale.”

The full article can be read using the link provided below.

Source: The Mountain Mail