The quest of tapping the country’s resources for geothermal energy has once again surfaced.
“Despite multiple assertions by the opposition, as recently as two weeks ago, that our national geothermal project as “dead,” we continue to assure the pubic that the reports of its death are greatly exaggerated,” Camillo Gonsalves, Minister of Finance said in the 2024 Budget presentation.
He said that the government was presently involved in discussions with multiple private sector entities with an interest in using the site for the generation of geothermal energy.
According to the finance minister, among the private sector entities was one who demonstrated an interest in using the site where the first exploration for geothermal occurred at Rabacca.
Gonsalves said that the entity had already submitted to Cabinet a proposal to Cabinet for scaleable, modular geothermal production at the site that would initially generate 5MW within 24 months of activity.
“Undoubtedly, the lack of permeability in the rocks surrounding La Soufriere dealt a setback to our geothermal ambitions,” Gonsalves said.
“But unlike those steeped in the ethos of learned helplessness, we do not accept setbacks as defeats. We see the, as an opportunity to regroup and advance,” he continued adding that it was anticipated that the government would be able to make an announcement within the first half of the year.
During the debate of the 2022 Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure, Senator Julian Francis, then the Minister of Urban Development, Airports, Seaports etc said that the state’s electric company VINLEC and a Canadian Company named Eavor had signed a memorandum of understanding and that the company was prepared to come and invest its own money using the asset that had already existed.
And that EC$445,000 had been placed in the Budget then for the project.
This following the failure by the Icelandic company Reykjavik Geothermal who ended drilling here after it was deemed that the area, although permeable, it was not permeable enough for it to be commercially viable.