Dominica launches geothermal exploration
Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit maintains that the French departments of Guadeloupe and Martinique will benefit from Dominica’s geothermal resources.
ROSEAU, Dominica, Wednesday December 7, 2011 - An Icelandic company has received the green light to proceed with geothermal exploration here, eight months after it signed an agreement with the government.
The company will assist in drilling three test wells in the Roseau Valley under an EC$17 million (US$6.29 million) contract with the Roosevelt Skerrit administration.
The prime minister said the government is committed to the project, though it has become more difficult to access financial resources at this time.
“We would have to spend even more to realize that important investment in Dominica,” he said, adding that the French departments of Guadeloupe and Martinique will benefit from the country’s geothermal resources.
“I always maintain that our geothermal resource must be shared with our friends and brothers and sisters there. We have to find a way. I believe that would be the biggest single project which would demonstrate how, with the use of resources, we can foster an integration process among ourselves,” Skerrit said during the ceremony to launch the project.
The project is being funded by the government, the European Union and the French Development Agency.
Minister for Energy Rayburn Blackmoore said the country must have a clear sense of the “size and quality” of the energy resource, “if we are to achieve the objectives that we are looking”.
He said those objectives include building a small plant to supply local demand and the construction of a 120 mega watt power plant to supply Guadeloupe and Martinique.
He has predicted that Dominica could begin benefitting from the project within two years.