Friday, May 19, 2006

Field day in Delmar

Today, if it isn't to wet, is Field day at Delmar Elementary School. A thousand or so kids plus parents etc will be out on the playgrounds running races, playing volleyball, tug of war, and screaming their lungs out. Field Day is usually one of the first reality checks for the kids in the first thru third grades. Most of their lives the kids of this age have not been put in competition, as individuals, where they may lose and lose badly. Today, at some point, the non-athletic ones will be having a good cry about losing. After the third grade they seem to learn to avoid those situations, come up with an excuse for losing, or make the best of it. Praise to the teachers for putting up with the events that occur on field days. Good Luck Mary Lee Pase.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Geothermal Heating Systems

As a member of the Delmar Utility Commission, over the years we have occasionally received inquiries about installing Geothermal Heating systems. In the past I have been against them because they were open loop systems. They had a well to draw water out, transfer the heat from the water to the heating system, then discharge the water back into another well (boring) so it would return to the ground. It is possible with this systems to use it for drinking water. It would therefore run the risk of cross contamination with the Town's water supply. I have always voted against such a system. One reason being that altho the original owner may swear up and down he would not tap it for drinking water once he sells the house you have no way of guaranteeing the second owner would not tap it. Now there is a closed loop system. The closed loop system comes in two versions; one is vertical and the other is horizontal. In a vertical closed loop system several borings (wells) are driven and a system of pipes that do not draw water from the ground but are loops of pipes whereas water or a solution is pumped into them transferring the heat from the ground to the water and the house is heated. They also have a horizonal system in which trenches are dug and the loop of pipes are laid in the trenches. Both systems (vertical and horizontal closed loops) seem to be unable to be tapped for a drinking supply. The only drawback I can think of is it may be possible the loops of pipes may leak which may contaminated the aquifer if they are that deep to enter the aquifer. The Delaware DNREC requires a permit for the vertical system but not for a horizontal system. In emails to them they prefer the closed loop system over the open system. At present I would lean toward approving such a system should someone request one.