Government making headway on geothermal energy project

GIS Dominica Press Release

Hon. Rayburn Blackmoore, Minister for Energy is satisfied with the tremendous progress made on Government’s mission to produce geothermal energy in Dominica.

In an interview with GIS News on Monday, Hon. Blackmoore informed that the Government has successfully gone through the initial phases of the project and has now completed drilling of production wells.

The projected date of completion for this phase was March 3rd 2014. Hon. Blackmoore is particularly pleased that on March 1st this phase was completed.

The next phase involves shutting down the wells for a twelve week period to monitor progress on the generation of heat.

“I have been so advised that to generate energy you need to have a minimum of 180 degrees Celsius based on the reviews we have gotten thus far, it is above 235 degrees. I think that this is tremendous for us going forward.”

The Energy Minister is also pleased with the incident-free progress on the geothermal development project.

“We got to the depth of fifteen hundred and six metres and the initial results that we have seen based on the log in that we’ve been able to monitor is that the results will be better than what we expected.”

Talks about pursuing geothermal energy on the island have been around for several decades. However, Hon. Blackmoore says it took the innovative and forward thinking of the Dominica Labour Party Administration to venture into such a project.

The Minister articulated the positive impact that harnessing this resource will have on Dominica’s economy.

“We have said to Dominican people that we want to first of all commission a small plant between 10 to 15 megawatts so that the people of Dominica can benefit from that resource.”

Currently, the cost of energy in Dominica is EC$1.17 per kilowatt hour to which Hon. Blackmoore says this is, “one of the most expensive in the Caribbean and we cannot attract any serious business in Dominica with that reality.”

He added, “High energy costs impacts negatively on every household and the entire economy. The Labour Party believes therefore, as we unlock the secrets of geothermal development, that is where our prosperity lies and that’s where the element of change especially in the energy sector is going to be effective.”

It is anticipated that by 2015 a small fifteen mega watt production plant will be constructed to supply energy for local consumption.

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