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Energy  The Shoshone Falls on the Snake River by Thomas Moran (1900) used courtesy of the Gilcrease Museum

Idaho Geothermal Resources
322 E. Front St
PO Box 83720
Boise, Idaho 83720-0098
Ph: (208) 287-4800
Fx: (208) 287-6700

>>Idaho Geothermal Resources

A Brief History of Geothermal District Heating in Idaho

Detailed History

Figure 1. Schematic of a geothermal district heating system

District heating systems deliver steam or hot water to multiple buildings for climate control. There are eight distinct geothermal district heating systems in Idaho:

  • Boise Warm Springs Water District (Boise)
  • City of Boise
  • State of Idaho - Capitol Mall Complex (Boise)
  • Veterans Administration (Boise)
  • College of Southern Idaho (Twin Falls)
  • City of Twin Falls
  • Kanaka Rapids Ranch (north of Buhl)
  • Ketchum

Figure 2. District heating systems that are currently in operation.

The four systems in the Boise area withdraw approximately 700 million gallons of geothermal water per year to heat about 300 homes, government buildings, and businesses. About 60 percent of the water is re-injected back into the aquifer.

The three systems in Twin Falls County are used to heat homes, college buildings, an elementary school, and the Twin Falls Community swimming pool.

The district heating system in Ketchum keeps about 60 homes warm.

At least 10 other areas in Idaho have been studied for potential district heating operations.

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"The Shoshone Falls on the Snake River" by Thomas Moran (1900) used courtesy of the Gilcrease Museum
All Other Materials © 2000-2002, Idaho Department of Water Resources.