SMU Geothermal Laboratory discovered unexpectedly high temperatures beneath West Virginia capable of supporting geothermal energy production. As a result, they've increased estimates of West Virginia's total heat content by 78% and geothermal generation potential by 75%. The finding, first reported today in Science News, will be presented at the upcoming Geothermal Resources Council conference in Sacramento, CA.
"The finding indicates that West Virginia potentially holds the highest grade geothermal resources east of the Mississippi River. SMU estimates that 2% of West Virginia's geothermal resources could support over 18,890 megawatts of electrical generating capacity using Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) and other advanced geothermal technologies such as Co-Produced Fluids and Low Temperature Hydrothermal."
The results can be seen in the updated Google Earth layer on U.S. Geothermal Resources.: