DOE Awards OSU $1 Million to Boost Geothermal Energy Research

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-03) applauded the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) announcement of $1 million in funding to Oklahoma State University (OSU) to advance the commercialization of enhanced geothermal systems (EGS)- manmade reservoirs that produce clean, renewable energy. EGS development could expand U.S. geothermal energy capabilities and extend the use of geothermal energy into new geographic areas across the country.

“Enhanced geothermal systems are a crucial component of our clean energy future in Oklahoma and across the country. Funding advanced research and development for new geothermal technologies was a high priority in the bipartisan Energy Act of 2020, and I’m glad to see DOE is moving forward on this critical issue,” said Congressman Frank Lucas, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. “Oklahoma State University is a pioneer in geothermal technologies and I’m excited to see how their research will help make enhanced geothermal systems a more affordable and widespread energy technology.”

“Tapping into geothermal energy- a clean and reliable energy source underneath our feet that is available in all corners of this country- is a key part of our plan to expand and diversify America’s clean energy market,” said Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “The ground-breaking solutions we’re anticipating from the selected national laboratory and university research teams will help America achieve a clean energy economy while creating good-paying jobs and bolstering America’s energy workforce.”

This funding will help develop and deploy technologies and techniques that will enable efficient and lower-cost geothermal heat production. Through this investment, DOE will advance its goal of driving down EGS costs and accelerating the path toward widespread commercialization. Through technology improvement, geothermal power generation could increase 26-fold, deploying 60 gigawatts-electric of clean energy by 2050 that could power as many as 60 million homes.

Last Congress, Congressman Lucas and Science Committee Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson introduced a bill that would advance geothermal energy technologies and prioritize fundamental research needed to develop and test advanced technologies to better capture and utilize geothermal energy. The legislation, the Advanced Geothermal Research and Development Act, was included in the bicameral Energy Act of 2020, which was passed by Congress and signed into law as a part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.

Lucas, an OSU alumnus and staunch advocate of fundamental research, including the University’s geothermal research, recently praised Oklahoma State University’s cutting-edge research facilities during a tour.

For more information about the award and additional program areas, visit DOE’s Geothermal Technologies Office’s website.

 

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