Why Geo Thermal?

The Rant for today is directed at Manitoba Hydro and the Manitoba government.  What is the objective of the cash grant and hydro loan for geo thermal systems? Why single out geo thermal when there are better solutions. Is it to reduce energy consumption? Is it to subsidize the HVAC industry?  What difference does it make to the government as to how you do it?  Insulation is far more effective than a geo thermal system at reducing consumption. If they provided the same loan structure and subsidy to buildings built to the new R 2000 standard or the International Passive House standard, you could build truly efficient buildings for the same price as a code built building. When the loan was paid out the owner would be miles ahead of a geo thermal system. 

When it comes to comparing technology using net present value, insulation wins over active systems hands down. A system like geo thermal uses energy to operate. Insulation has no operating cost. A geo thermal system needs maintenance.  Insulation has no maintenance cost. A geo thermal system will eventually need to be replaced. Insulation, if installed correctly will never need to be replaced during the life of the building. Cellulose insulation is recycled paper that was made from wood, therefore it is a carbon storage system rather than a greenhouse gas producing system.  

Randy Proven
Vice President
Sun Certified Builders Coop Ltd
R2000 Licensed Builder
HRAI Certified

Added: Tue June 9th 2015