BRADES, Montserrat -- The Caribbean island of Montserrat is entering a new chapter, bouncing back from the devastation caused by the eruption of the Soufriere Volcano in the mid-1990s. With the guidance of the Montserrat Development Corporation (MDC), a new capital city on the northwest coast of the island is being developed.
Geothermal development in Montserrat
MDC’s master plan for economic growth is preparing the island for redevelopment and the regeneration of private enterprise. The island’s rebirth gives rise to a unique investment opportunity, enabling developers and investors to be instrumental in the development of a new destination already equipped with a sustainable infrastructure. Geothermal energy is playing a key role in the transformation of the island, making a sustainable investment opportunity that much more attractive.
With the creation and successful testing of two geothermal wells, the foundation has been laid for a geothermal energy program. Future development of a third well is backed by the UK government, which is evidence of their continuing support of the rebirth of Montserrat.
Selected by the Montserratian government in October 2012, Iceland Drilling Company Ltd began its search for geothermal energy on the island. The leading high-tech company in the field of high temperature deep geothermal drilling created two geothermal wells between Weekes Village and Garibaldi Hill, located in the island’s exclusion zone. Previously a reminder of Montserrat’s past, the exclusion zone is now critical to the island’s future.
This visit-by-permit-only zone of the island is the location of Montserrat’s old capital city, the ash-laden town of Plymouth, a modern-day Pompeii now poised to become a major tourist attraction. In addition to revenue derived from tourism, the presence of geothermal energy in the region offers the opportunity for further economic growth.
Now, with geothermal coming on board soon energy prices will be significantly lower. The two geothermal wells will produce environmentally-friendly, long-lasting energy, sufficient to power the island in the near future. With forthcoming construction of a third well, it is anticipated a surplus of energy may be available.
MDC understands the reality that Montserrat is competing with other Caribbean destinations in attracting investors. With this in mind, Montserrat hopes to offer investors an established geothermal energy program soon and numerous investment incentives to attract investors who share in its vision of an eco-friendly capital.