Nevis government receives dozens of bids, inquiries for geothermal drilling
NIA CHARLESTOWN NEVIS (February 28, 2023) – Due to the overwhelming response from prospective bidders, the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) has extended the bidding process for geothermal drilling until March 09, 2023.
“So far I’m told over 30 companies have put in bids or shown interest, and as a result the bidding process has been extended to March 09,” Premier Hon. Mark Brantley, NIA Minister of Energy said during his monthly press conference this morning, February 28. He said the extension of one month had come at the request of prospective bidders.
“After March 09 we would expect a decision to be taken and then we move forward. I’ve been in touch with Honourable Prime Minister Dr. Terrance Drew and he has assured me that all that was necessary to be done at the Federal level in terms of the grant funding, that documentation has been settled and finalized and returned to the CDB [Caribbean Development Bank], and so therefore I look forward to this project moving forward rapidly…as we try now to get the promise of geothermal realized here in the Federation for the benefit not only for Nevis, but also of course for our brothers and sisters in St. Kitts as well.”
In December 2022 the CDB approved USD$17 million for the drilling phase of the Nevis Geothermal Project, which includes the drilling of three production and two injection wells.
Premier Brantley said that in accordance with CDB procurement procedures, a tender was launched for a contractor to provide the drilling services, including drilling rig, wellhead equipment, casings and integrated drilling services.
In his 2023 Budget Address the Premier explained it is expected that bids will be evaluated and then the necessary approvals obtained.
“Drilling is expected to commence within six months from signing of a contract and it is also expected that drilling will be completed within a further period of six months.”
According to Premier Brantley, the economic impact of harnessing geothermal energy is tremendous for both local use and as an incentive for direct investment into Nevis.
“At the proposed purchase price to NEVLEC [Nevis Electricity Company] of US$0.09 cents per kilowatt hour, Nevis promises to have the cheapest and cleanest electricity in the region, paving the way for significant savings for our people. In addition, geothermal energy will position us to benefit from foreign direct investment from business entities which are heavily dependent on energy for their daily operations. We are now well poised to take advantage of the gift, that is geothermal resource, and to propel Nevis into a new era of development.”