I recently attended a village meeting with approximately 70 other local folks that focused on the ramifications of the geothermal plant in Laudat. The meeting was presented by the Geothermal Awareness Group of Dominica. It seems the general public has not been made aware of the negative effects geothermal energy can have on such a delicate eco-system as Dominica.

The awareness group brought a power point presentation showing erosion of present pipes in the drilling areas and questionable leaks. Their suggestion is to have an independent study done by a non-partial group as to the effects of such. They also brought up the question of whether an Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) was done and to make it available to residents as a transparent move on the governments' part.

The third concern was for the safe disposal of the toxic waste and how it will affect the land, the air and the peoples' health within a 15 mile radius or more. Questions also were raised about hydrogen sulfide as a toxic gas in low levels which may cause wheezing, coughing and asthma attacks that require medication. A recent three year study done in Iceland has found a connection between hydrogen sulfide and respiratory health effects. The company who wants to do the well in Laudat is from Iceland.

Most at the meeting were quite surprised they had not heard about these problems before the project started. To be continued…..