Financing and government policy have been identified as the major challenges to the development of geothermal energy in the Eastern Caribbean, a survey conducted by the Energy Unit of the OECS Commission revealed.

The survey looked at geothermal development, its challenges, and potential areas where collaboration would be beneficial.  The survey gathered the views of 86 people involved in geothermal energy, half of whom were based in the OECS region.

Most of the OECS respondents (82 percent), were employees of government or utility companies pursuing geothermal energy initiatives. With respect to non-OECS respondents, almost 50 percent were private sector geothermal experts with past experience working on geothermal projects.

Judith Ephraim, Head of the OECS Sustainable Energy Unit, said the report is available and can be downloaded from the OECS Commission website.

“Geothermal energy has emerged as a priority for the Eastern Caribbean because of its significant potential to transform the energy landscape. In light of this the OECS Commission has been lending its support to member states in their efforts toward renewable energy and specifically geothermal energy. The OECS Commission is also looking to establish a database of geothermal experts and companies in the OECS, to support the national efforts for geothermal energy for the region.”

Currently, seven of the 10 OECS member states are working towards the development of geothermal resources. The scientific evidence shows a strong possibility for development as countries continue to assess and quantify their geothermal potential.