The plan identifies 190 million acres — nearly twice the size of California — that would be available for geothermal leasing in 12 Western states.
Potential industrial geothermal sites in AZ (click to enlarge).
Although geothermal facilities can have a smaller footprint than solar or wind fields, they would leave their mark on the land much like oil and gas development — with roads, pipelines, power plants and transmission lines.
Daniel Patterson, ecologist and Southwest director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, said geothermal energy holds potential. "But we still have to consider, are our public lands there to be turned into energy farms? Or should we be investing in rooftop solar?"
- adapted from LAT