EPA Won’t Increase Geothermal Efficiency Levels for Energy Star Rating
Good news for the U.S. geothermal heat pump industry. The Geothermal Exchange Organization (GEO) recently learned that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will not be increasing the efficiency standards for geothermal heat pumps (GHPs) listed in the Energy Star Program.
Over the past several months GEO President and CEO Doug Dougherty has participated in several discussions with EPA staff regarding their triennial review of Energy Star products, which this year included GHPs. GEO’s position is that the standards should not increase, with Dougherty presenting several reasons why EPA should not do so in 2015. “I basically stuck to the point that GHPs are the most efficient way to satisfy the thermal loads of homes and we are the most expensive,” said Dougherty. “We still have less than 2% of residential market share, and our biggest barrier to adoption is high upfront cost. EPA shouldn’t raise this barrier for only incremental gains in efficiency when we already significantly outperform our nearest competi-tion.” EPA agreed and will reach out to GEO in about 30 months to revisit the issue.