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Schools Using Geothermal Energy in Iowa

The School

Benefits of Geothermal

How it Works

Webster City Middle School

  • The geothermal heating reduces noise, is a cleaner energy source, and is easier to maintain than the old system.
  • The system saves the district $7,000 in annual energy costs.

Webster City’s vertical loop system consists of 384 bores ranging from 100 to 300 feet deep. Water circulating through pipes is kept warm or cool by the constant temperatures in the earth.

Iowa Central Community College

  • Cut heating costs by one third in the dorms where the system is being used.
  • The system offers an added bonus because the dorms now have air-conditioning which is rare in most college dormitories.
 

Lime Springs Elementary

  • The school has estimated that it is saving $3,500 in energy costs per year, avoiding the use of up to 13,000 gallons of heating oil.
  • They now have air conditioning.
  • The fields where the coils are buried now serve as a playground and ball field.

The school installed a 28-loop heat pump system that provides heating and air conditioning to all classrooms and office areas.

Clark College

  • The installation cost the college about $60,000 more than a traditional system would have, but the school had that cost covered through a construction loan and sizeable utility rebate.

The geothermal heat pump system consists of 48 bores and 20 heat pumps, providing heating and cooling for the entire 30,000 square-foot building for dormitories.

Oelwein Middle School

  • The school had to choose to either replace 12 rooftop-heating units for more than 1 million dollars or install a geothermal system for $850,000, which would in turn save one third of the annual operating costs. The school received a $850,000 low interest loan.
  • This school expects to save $23,000 per year.
  • The project was financed through the DNR’s Iowa Energy Bank Program.
  • The school’s insurance costs have decreased because it no longer uses natural gas.