23. febrúar 2012

Promising start to geothermal drilling in Dominica

Along with the drilling company Iceland drilling (Jardboranir), Iceland GeoSurvey has been involved in exploration drilling on the Caribbean island of Dominica since early December. This is the first exploration drilling in Dominica.

The drill Sleipnir on top of well LL-01 in Laudat, Dominica. (Photo Sigurður Sveinn Jónsson).Considerable research of the geothermal potential of the island has already been conducted, and there are hopeful signs that it can be harnessed.

Dominica has about 70 thousand inhabitants, but a large part of the islanders’ electricity is produced with diesel generators and 20-30% comes from hydroelectric power.

The drilling of the first geothermal well was finished about two weeks ago with good results. The well seems to have fairly good permeability and to be quite hot. This is a positive sign that there is exploitable geothermal energy in Dominica, and this first well could possibly be used for electricity production. Discharge testing of the well, which remains to be performed, will provide more detailed information about the potential for exploitation.

The plan is to drill three wells and Iceland Drilling has already started drilling of the second well. With 10 employees involved in the project on site and in Iceland, Iceland GeoSurvey geologists, engineers, logging specialists and geochemists are responsible for borehole geology, logging, sampling, environmental monitoring and general consulting. Iceland GeoSurvey also provides a logging truck and various other tools and equipment at the drill site.

In addition to the government of Dominica, the project is financed by the French Development Agency (ADF) and the European Development Fund (EDF).

A view towards Roseau, the capital of Dominica. (Photo Sigurður Sveinn Jónsson.)