Controversy Surrounds Geothermal Project
Less than a month after the signing of an $18.1 million dollar contract between the Dominica Government and the Iceland Drilling Company for geothermal exploration, the project has been hit with controversy.
The contract which was signed on December 10th, 2012 will see the drilling of three production wells in the Roseau Valley area which includes Trafalgar, Wotten Waven and Morne Prosper.
On Monday January 7th, residents of the Roseau Valley Constituency conducted a meeting to express their concerns regarding the drilling of these wells.
Among their concerns were the issues of water contamination, land slippage, volcano eruption, air emission and inhalation of hazardous fumes.
One resident said he is not sure if the Dominican population know of how far they are drilling into the earth and reports are they have drilled way below sea level, meaning that all of the things that are deep beneath the earth, and they are exposing it to their drinking water
Meanwhile Parliamentary Representative for the constituency, Dr. Colin McIntyre has said that the concerns of the residents “will not be swept under the mat”.
Upon hearing the concerns of the people, Cabinet met on Tuesday to discuss the matter and are willing and have planned through the Ministry of Public Works to bring in a team, again of experts, to address the concerns of the people.
Although some residents have indicated willingness to be relocated to another part of the Island, People of Morne Prosper do not support the project.
The goal of the geothermal project is for a reduction in the energy cost to citizens and to export energy to the neighboring islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe.
The drilling work is expected to commence by June 2013.
SAT TV will bring you an update on the story in a subsequent newscast.