An educational program titled, “Ground Source Heating & Cooling for Residential and Commercial properties: Latest Technologies, Economic Advantages, Environmental Impacts and Regulations,” will be presented April 2 at the Holiday Inn in Naperville, Ill. The workshop is hosted by the American Ground Water Trust, with assistance from the Illinois Association of Ground Water Professionals, the International Ground Source Heat Pump Association, the Ground Source Heat Pump Consortium, Climate Master and WaterFurnace.

Today’s ground source heating and cooling (GSHC) technology provides a proven method for saving significant amounts of energy for heating, cooling and hot water generation for any application. GSHC systems operate at significantly lower costs than traditional gas-, oil- or electric-based installations. National benefits from geoexchange installations include less demand for energy generation capacity, reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, and a reduced dependence on imports of oil and other fossil fuels. By definition, installation of ground source systems involves accessing the sub-surface by either excavation or by drilling vertical bores. Because the sub-surface heat-exchange process occurs near or beneath the ground water table, environmental and water resource regulatory questions about design and installation have been raised.

This one-day program will:

  • Define the state-of-the-art in terms of design options and economic payback.

  • Demonstrate the environmental and strategic benefits of the technology.

  • Dispel common myths about the effectiveness, reliability and safety of ground source systems.

  • Explain industry-accepted installation, operation and maintenance practices.

  • Provide an update on state, local and regulatory oversight recommendations.

    Questions to be considered:

  • Are there any environmental or economic risks associated with this technology?

  • Are there data that clearly demonstrate risk cause and effect?

  • Do design and installation standards provide adequate environmental protection?

  • Should specific professional training be required for the belowground system installation?

  • Which agencies should, or do, have, regulatory oversight for heat exchange installations?

  • What are the barriers to widespread adoption of the technology for new buildings or for homeowner retrofit, and what can be done to eliminate these barriers?

The program draws on the experience and expertise of industry and agency professionals, and will provide a unique opportunity for exchange of information among policy makers involved in energy issues and specialists involved with the design, construction and permitting of ground source geoexchange systems for cooling and heating.

Continuing education credits are available. To register or to learn more, visit or telephone 603-228-5444.