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Heat Without Fire: Deep Geothermal in the Northeastern U.S.

Heat Without Fire: Deep Geothermal in the Northeastern U.S. December 15 7pm ET 
Deep geothermal heat  could transform how energy is provided to communities in the future. 

Geothermal is not something often considered in the Northeast due to the depth required to find heat. We, as a society, face the challenges of weaning off of fossil fuels and switching to sources that do not add greenhouse gasses to the atmosphere. Electricity production from alternative energy sources, like wind and solar power can help, but what can be done to replace over 30% of New York State’s energy consumption that is used to heat our homes and offices? Cornell University researchers and staff may have that answer. They are exploring how the heat deep below our feet – geothermal energy – can fill this need anywhere, using Cornell’s Ithaca campus as a demonstration site. 

Join the discussion on how a 10,000 foot deep geothermal observation borehole was installed at Cornell over the summer of 2022, what this means for reducing fossil fuel energy for the University, and how the approach might be applied to energy transitions nationally. 


Teresa 'Terry' Jordan J. Preston Levis Professor of Engineering Emerita Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Cornell University

Terry Jordan is a geologist, recently retired from nearly 40 years of teaching at Cornell,

yet still continuing as a researcher. Her research involves use of sedimentary rock distributions and properties to reconstruct earth history and to provide natural resources. For the last decade, her foci have been to discover the history of millions of years of climate change and water availability in the Atacama Desert of Chile, and to help to find more environmentally benign ways to meet society's needs for energy using subsurface resources. Her primary ongoing project is geothermal energy exploration in eastern North America, with a 2022 focus on the Cornell University Borehole Observatory.

Robert 'Bert' Bland Associate Vice President for Energy and Sustainability Cornell Facilities and Campus Services

Bert Bland is a licensed Professional Engineer, and is responsible for operating the district energy system that generates heat and electricity for 250 major buildings on Cornell’s Ithaca campus.  He is also responsible for transforming that energy system to achieve a carbon neutral campus by 2035.  Bert served as the executive director for the construction of the Cornell University Borehole Observatory.


Don Haas (formerly, Don Duggan-Haas) is the Director of Teacher Programming at The Paleontological Research Institution and its Museum of the Earth & Cayuga Nature Center in Ithaca, NY. He is a nationally regarded expert in climate and energy education,

place-based and technology-rich Earth and environmental science education; and is a past president of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers. He is co-author of the books, The Teacher-Friendly Guide to Climate Change and The Science Beneath the Surface: A Very Short Guide to the Marcellus Shale. He strives to help others thrive in their teaching and learning, especially as related to climate and energy and he wants you to talk more about fire.


This event will stream live December 15 at 7pm ET


For more information about the Cornell University Borehole Observatory, CUBO, visit here.