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Innovative Geothermal Energy Project Launched in the Halifax Regional Municipality

Today, Mayor Peter J Kelly marked the start of construction on the Alderney 5 Advanced Geothermal Energy Project in Dartmouth.

The Alderney 5 project is a $3.0-million energy-efficiency retrofit of five buildings on the Dartmouth waterfront that are owned by the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM); Natural Resource Canada's Technology Early Action Measures program is providing $1 million. The project will save an estimated $250,000 per year in energy costs.

An important feature of this project is the first large-scale application of geothermal cold energy storage anywhere in the world. This highly innovative geothermal borehole energy storage system features a new design of borehole heat exchanger that will be used in a field consisting of 100 holes, 600 feet deep. Cold energy harvested from the adjacent seawater during winter months chills the rock mass underground. This stored energy can then be used to meet peak air conditioning needs, eliminating the need for a supplementary cooling system.

"This advanced geothermal energy project demonstrates HRM's continued focus on environmental leadership and stewardship and will also provide considerable savings," said Mayor Kelly. "We have two other construction projects using conventional geothermal designs and are very excited that this one is incorporating 100% renewable energy for air conditioning our buildings. We are especially pleased to be working with locally based private partner, High Performance Energy Systems, as well as our federal and provincial partners."

"We need energy to power our economy, and we need clean energy to protect our environment - that's a priority for our government and the foundation of our practical, balanced approach to climate change," said the Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources. "By investing in ground breaking projects like this one, we are making sure that clean, renewable power will form an increasingly important part of our energy mix for the future, in Canada and worldwide."

The construction, taking place over approximately one year, will include the installation of a high-efficiency central gas fired boiler plant and a lighting retrofit. The project is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 580 tonnes per year, and allow for the removal of 2,200 lbs of ozone-depleting CFC's that are currently used to air condition the properties.

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