Worldwide installed capacity of geothermal heat pump (GHP) systems will grow by nearly 150 percent over the next 7 years, from 52.7 gigawatts-thermal (GWt) to 127.4 GWt, says a new report from Navigant Research.
Geothermal heat pump (GHP) systems harness moderate and constant temperatures just below the earth’s surface. GHP systems are being deployed in nearly every region of the world and in residential, commercial, institutional, and industrial environments with great success.
Despite recent setbacks in deployments in many parts of the world due to the economic downturn, the future looks bright for the worldwide GHP market, the report said.
Backed by the renewable energy policies implemented in favor of GHP systems, the market saw strong growth in the last decade. The growth will continue as the global economy improves, said Mackinnon Lawrence, principal research analyst with Navigant Research.
“Although their overall penetration remains low, GHP installations are gaining traction in both the construction industry and the regulatory environment, and this high-efficiency technology will likely play a larger role in both new build and retrofit projects going forward,” Lawrence added.
The growth of GHP market is also tied to that of the housing market, said the report. As the number of housing starts increases, so do the opportunities for installers and engineers of GHP systems to deploy their technology.
However, the developers’ decision to deploy GHPs in a project depends on a number of factors including quality of construction, construction budget, ease of getting a loan, and importance of green image.
Thus, while the rate of housing starts has grown steadily over the last 2 years, the rate of GHP deployments has not kept pace, the study concludes.