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Geothermal Potential in the Caribbean

A big green florest with an extraction field in the middle

Many islands in the Caribbean have been formed as a result of volcanic activity. This occurred by subduction when the denser North American plate sunk beneath the Caribbean plate forcing magma to rise to the surface which further erupted to form volcanoes. It is a fact that most high-temperature geothermal systems are associated with volcanic systems. Studies have been conducted over the years and in recent times, a number of these volcanic islands have been confirmed to possess sufficient geothermal resources and potential.

Presently, Guadeloupe is the only Caribbean island which hosts an operational geothermal power plant. As Small Island Developing States (SIDS) with heavy dependence on oil and natural gas imports to meet their energy demands, seven of ten OECS member states namely – St. Kitts and Nevis, Montserrat, Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Grenada are in the process of exploiting their confirmed geothermal resources to engage in geothermal development for electricity generation for the future.

Funding has been provided by organizations such as IRENA, The World Bank and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) to the governments of these islands for development. However, preliminary work for any geothermal project is cost intensive, and procuring additional investment has been the major challenge towards progress. In hindsight, for many of these Eastern Caribbean islands, geothermal development is the gateway towards energy independence and increased sustainability for the future.

For more information on geothermal development in the Caribbean, follow our #GeothermalFactsandStats campaign across all major social media platforms.

Author: Elizabeth Bullock

Sources:

  • Saint Lucia Calls fo Functional Cooperation on Geothermal Development in the Caribbean; ThinkGeo Energy Article
  • LSE
  • Photo Credit: Bastien Poux and ThinkGeoEnergy

#geothermal #Caribbean #volcanos #lovegeothermal #renewableenergy