Geothermal Heat Pumps
A Geothermal Heat Pump System is a mechanical device, also known as a ground source heat pump or geoexchange system, which uses the geothermal exchange properties and the relatively constant temperature of earth formations for heating or cooling a building space.
An open-loop system using either a water well supply or return well for the disposal of used water likely requires a well construction permit issued by the local health department. The wells must be constructed in accordance with the state well code.
Since closed-loop systems do not extract groundwater, the MDEQ does not have authority to regulate their installation under the state well code. However, some local health departments do have requirements for closed-loop systems, and those individuals installing these systems need to comply with all applicable local requirements.
The information below should be consulted before a geothermal system is installed in Michigan.
- MDEQ Best Practices for Geothermal Vertical Closed Loop Installation
- MDEQ Geothermal Heat Pump Systems Guide
- Ground Source Heat Pump Fact Sheet (MDLEG)
- US DOE Office of Energy and Renewable Energy
- Michigan Geothermal Energy Association
- Geothermal Heat Pump Consortium
- International Ground Source Heat Pump Association
Geothermal Statute Discussion
The MDEQ is reigniting the process for establishing a state statute for the purpose of regulating the installation of Closed Loop Geothermal Heat Pump boreholes. As part of that process, a Stakeholder Meeting was convened on November 13, 2017, to gain input on this topic. The previous version of the draft geothermal legislation was modified to reflect comments provided by stakeholders. The latest version is available for review (see below).
- Draft Statute Language (with edits highlighted)
- Draft Statute Language (without edits highlighted)
- Comments/Questions and MDEQ Responses Regarding the Current Draft
Please provide comments or questions by June 1, 2018, regarding the draft to David DeYoung at email@example.com or 517-284-6526.