Local Community Goes Green "Underground"

3 years 8 months 3 weeks ago October 01, 2012 Oct 1, 2012 Monday, October 01 2012 Monday, October 01, 2012 8:11:00 PM CDT in News
By: Karl Roskamp

COLUMBIA - What is a group of Columbia residents doing that 95 percent of Americans are not?

An intentional community dubbed Terra Nova, which prides itself on ecologically friendly living, found the answer under their feet. Terra Nova uses ground source heating to cover all their heating and cooling needs.

"We can keep the thermostat at any temperature we like year round," Terra Nova member Claire Garden said.

Ground source heating, unlike geothermal heating, does not rely on the Earth's core for heat; instead, it uses groundwater or soil to provide the heating and cooling. The process doesn't just provide heat and air conditioning; it does so efficiently.

"Ground source heat pumps statistically have been documented to probably be the most efficient investment you can make in terms of energy," O2 Geothermal partner Jim Oakley said, who installed ground source heating for his own home.

"Your largest loads in your house for energy usage are heating, air conditioning and heating water and a ground source heat pump can do all those things."

Heat pumps work because heat wants to travel from something that's warm to something that's cold. During installation, a contractor will drill horizontal or vertical loops into the ground. A vertical system, which is used by Garden and Terra Nova, is preferred when there isn't a lot of land to install the loops. The drilling will go 100 to 400 feet deep in a vertical system.

More land is required for workers to install a horizontal system, but it's installed at a shallower depth of five to ten feet and is more cost-effective.

Once installed, the loops are filled with a liquid such as water and ethanol. If the liquid is colder than the surrounding Earth, it will absorb the heat and use it to warm up the home it's serving. The system can be reversed to provide cooling.

Despite upfront costs that may deter potential buyers, ground sourcing heating holds up against the competition.

"A ground source heat pump is far more efficient than either an air heat pump or gas furnace," Garden said.

Even though air pumps are cheaper, they aren't as effective in the winter, according to Oakley. The air pumps have to exert more energy to convert freezing air into to heat while ground source heat pumps work when the Earth has temperatures between 55 to 57 degrees year round.

Using ground source heat pumps can also reduce dependence on gas and electricity that is normally used for heating and cooling. That would be the case for Garden and Terra Nova members, but their electric needs are already covered by their 38 solar panels.

"We're very much dedicated to getting green energy if we can and to being as energy efficient as we can," Garden said.

 

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - A small plane made an emergency landing Wednesday at Columbia Regional Airport. The single engine Piper aircraft... More >>
1 hour ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 8:52:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri is now offering students recovering from alcohol or substance abuse a sober housing option.... More >>
3 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 7:12:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas man has been sentenced to 25 years in prison without parole for participating in... More >>
3 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 6:45:39 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Three suicide bombers attacked the international terminal at an airport in Istanbul, Turkey late Tuesday. KOMU 8 News... More >>
3 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 6:43:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Gov. Jay Nixon is backing a proposed power line in Missouri that's part of a multi... More >>
5 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 5:06:32 PM CDT in News
PITTSBURG, Kan. (AP) — Authorities in sou theast Missour i have been searching for a Kansas man who hasn't been... More >>
5 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 4:42:47 PM CDT in News
BRANSON (AP) — A 77-year-old man who said he robbed a Branson bank to get access to health care has... More >>
5 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 4:21:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A former system president and a wealthy university donor will help review the University of Missouri... More >>
6 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 3:39:24 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - More pets go missing over the 4th of July holiday weekend than any other time of year, according... More >>
7 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 2:26:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA – During drought situations, private ground water wells should be tested, said Bob Broz, University of Missouri Extension water... More >>
8 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 2:03:00 PM CDT in News
MONTGOMERY COUNTY - The manhunt began late Wednesday morning after a suspect led troopers on a high speed chase. ... More >>
10 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 11:42:00 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Authorities are investigating after an officer found a man dead in a vehicle while responding... More >>
10 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 11:24:30 AM CDT in News
KINLOCH, Mo. (AP) — An 18-year-old suspect continues to recover after being shot by police in the St. Louis suburb... More >>
11 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 11:02:01 AM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri attorney general's office says more must be done to determine how a U.S.... More >>
12 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 9:24:33 AM CDT in News
KENNETT, Mo. (AP) - Charges have been upgraded to first-degree murder in the deaths of two southeast Missouri residents who... More >>
13 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 8:40:59 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A 44-year-old St. Louis man is recovering after an unprovoked attack by a group of boys.... More >>
14 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 7:36:00 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - A suburban Kansas City man has pleaded guilty to participating in a series of Craigslist... More >>
14 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 7:29:49 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Two brothers have been sentenced to 15 years in prison for fatally shooting a 21-year-old... More >>
14 hours ago June 29, 2016 Jun 29, 2016 Wednesday, June 29 2016 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 7:24:28 AM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 71°
11pm 71°
12am 71°
1am 70°
2am 69°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

10:00p
KOMU 8 News @ 10
10:35p
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
11:37p
Late Night with Seth Meyers
10:00p
Cougar Town
10:30p
Cougar Town
11:00p
Raising Hope

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
2016 U.S. Summer Olympic Trials
8:00p
The Night Shift
7:00p
Arrow
8:00p
Supernatural
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld