Selectpower Completes Geothermal System for Guelph Hydro's New Facility

February 8, 2006 Guelph, ON - Selectpower Inc. designed and installed a geothermal energy system that will provide 100% of heating and cooling for Guelph Hydro Electric Systems Inc.'s (GHESI) newly expanded headquarters

February 8, 2006 Guelph, ON - Selectpower Inc. designed and installed a geothermal energy system that will provide 100% of heating and cooling for Guelph Hydro Electric Systems Inc.'s (GHESI) newly expanded headquarters on Southgate Drive.


Geothermal energy (also called earth energy or ground-source energy) refers to heat naturally stored in the earth. The geothermal system installed by Selectpower uses a series of buried pipes to capture this energy to heat and cool the rooms inside the 36,426 square foot building addition. GHESI has over 10 years experience with geothermal technology, as their existing 67,000 square foot facility has used a similar system since 1995.

"We've completely eliminated their natural gas bill," says Selectpower Energy Services Manager Leslie Thomas. "That will save about $50,000 annually. The building will be comfortable and use about 500,000 kilowatt hours less energy each year than a building with a traditional natural gas heating and electric air conditioning system."

The initial cost of the new geothermal system is higher than a traditional heating and cooling system, but it is estimated that the energy savings cover the higher cost in just 5 years. Annual operating costs will be substantially lower than those of a traditional system, and GHESI won't bear the risk of paying fluctuating future natural gas rates. Electricity consumption is also lower than that of a traditional system, which helps to meet the provincial government's goal of lowering electricity consumption in Ontario.

Selectpower's geothermal system uses a combination of vertical and horizontal buried pipes called "loops" on the site. A water solution circulates through the loops and absorbs heat from under the ground, and delivers it to the geothermal reversible heat exchangers in the building. The system compresses the temperature of the water solution in the loops, and uses that heat to warm the rooms inside of the building. In the summer, the system is reversed; the heat from the inside the building is deposited back to the ground by the loops.

"Using geothermal energy instead of natural gas heating and electrical air conditioning reduces the greenhouse gas emissions that would be produced by the building by over 168 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year" adds Thomas. "So, the ecological impact or 'footprint' of the building is also reduced."

The geothermal system is one of the building features contributing to GHESI's goal of LEED Certification through the Canadian Green Building Council. Other features include: heat recovery, storm water management and use of low-emitting materials.

The new building expansion is scheduled to be occupied in April 2006 when all GHESI staff will move from the Dawson Road offices to their new environmentally and technologically state of the art facility.

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Selectpower is a retail affiliate of Guelph Hydro Inc. Selectpower offers Energy-Smart Solutions'; residential and commercial energy assessments and upgrades, insulation, roofing, windows and doors, energy-efficient heating and air conditioning, fireplaces, natural gas plans, geothermal solutions, solar systems, wind energy, water heaters and softeners, water saving toilets and fixtures, energy-saving lighting and more.

Contact: Stacey Hare
Marketing and Communications
Selectpower Inc.
519.780.1209 ext 107
519.830.0009 cell
share@selectpower.ca

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