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Drilling component of geothermal energy project to commence soon

 

Geothermal Exploration site in Roseau Valley.

Three test wells will be constructed in the Roseau valley area as Dominica moves forward towards the development of geothermal energy.

Energy Minister Rayburn Blackmore told a media site visit in Laudat yesterday that the commencement of the actual drilling component could take place soon.

“We expect of course to see the completion of the access component to the pad in the next four weeks and so that we can have the commencement of the actual drilling component which should take approximately one month and then to be followed by the actual testing. We are confident therefore that once we are able to ascertain the quality and the quantity, because you know our long term plan therefore is to sell to the French Department of Guadeloupe and Martinique.”

He says the project will help decrease the cost of fuel imports, adding that the drilling of test wells in the Roseau Valley area was part of government’s thrust towards satisfying the long-term energy needs of citizens.

“We believe that moving forward therefore that the nationals have to benefit from that resource. Let’s look at that from a practical standpoint. If we’re able to have a cheaper and more reliable energy source what does that mean for us in terms of reduction of poverty in this country and the elevation of Dominica in terms of their quality of life, etcetera?…. So I believe from a national economic standpoint if we can have down the road another contributor to the gross domestic product, I think that in itself will bring significant advancement for us as a collective,” Mr Blackmoore said.

He says the government has entered into contractual arrangements with Offshore Marine for the civil works for site two.
Blackmore says 1.2 million dollars will be spent on access to the area.

Project Coordinator Mr. Jason Timothy. Image via: GIS News

Meantime, Project coordinator for the development of Geothermal Energy Jason Timothy says the project will enable Dominica to become an energy exporter.

“The plan here is to drill down to about 1.2 kilometers. At that depth we hope to find the reservoir of geothermal energy. Now that reservoir we hope will provide enough electricity for not only the country but to export to our neighbouring countries and the benefits of this is that right now we are an energy importer, that will enable us to become an energy exporter,” he said.

According to the Mr Timothy, each test well will each be about 1.2 kilometers deep depending on the depth of the reservoir.

“We’re going to be drilling three test wells each about 1.2 kilometers deep, this may vary according to what we find. We may find the reservoir at 800 meters then we know that we don’t have to go as deep or we may reach the top and need to go a little further say 1.5 kilometers.”

Earlier this year Dominica signed a multi-million dollar agreement with an Icelandic company for exploration of geothermal energy sources on the Island.

Member of Parliament for Roseau Valley Consitituency, Hon. Dr. Colin McIntyre. Image via: GIS News

In related news, Member of Parliament for the Roseau Valley Constituency Dr Collin McIntyre says he is very excited about the project as it will create tremendous benefits to the people of the constituency.

“As Parl. Rep for the Roseau Valley I am excited about this project; as you are well aware of the fact that this will bring tremendous opportunity for the people of the Roseau Valley. We depend largely on tourism in the Roseau Valley and of course the path or the trend presently taking place on the global front is not a pleasant, one in terms of the economies and the situation in terms of the global financial position.”

He says the project would help create employment and address the issue of poverty among the residents of his constituency.

“So we in the Roseau Valley are excited about this project, it creates an opportunity for our people. When I say opportunity I am referring to lowering the cost of electricity which is something of significance to the island, but in terms of job opportunity for the people of Roseau Valley. Tourism as well because with a geothermal plant, something new in this area in this part of the world of course will invite people in the area where they could have a look at the geothermal plant,” he said.

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