||The islands of the Caribbean, despite their large amounts of readily available renewable energy resources, including solar energy, wind power, geothermal energy, and biomass, face many challenges to their energy sectors as they are still heavily dependent and rely on imported fossil fuel for their energy production. Small island developing states such as the federation of St. Kitts and Nevis, receive subsidies from the government but economically this cannot be seen as a long term solution. A long term and much greater economic solution would be to decrease the dependency of imported fossil fuel by diversifying the energy mix with the introduction of renewable energy technologies, thus creating long term energy security which has been the top agenda for Caribbean leaders.|
The main goal of this thesis is to analyse the energy sector of St. Kitts and demonstrate how we can achieve energy security by implementing the use of geothermal energy as our renewable energy technology to cover baseload. With geothermal there is the added advantage of it being a god source of energy with practically no harmful emissions, exceptionally constant source of energy doesn’t depend on the climate, high efficiency with little to no maintenance. There are moderately large areas of steaming ground in the crater of Mount Liamuiga, as well as thermal springs along the western shoreline.
The pre-feasibility assessment of the proposed geothermal power plant is evaluated using RETScreen simulation software, through the performance of an energy production analysis, financial analysis and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions analysis. An annual electricity generation of roughly 183,700 MWh with an energy production of 22 MW were the initial results obtained, this is about 51% of electricity installation capacity of present St. Kitts. The net present value (NPV) which should have a positive value, internal rate of return (IRR) which should be equal or greater than the discount rate, simple payback period (SPP) which measures the time it takes to recover the initial investment, benefit-cost ratio (B/C) which should be greater than 1 and energy production cost (EPC) which could be used calculate the avoided cost of energy for the project to break even where used as financial indicators which gave profitably indications for the development of the geothermal power plant project.
The sensitivity analysis shows the most sensitive variable affecting profitability and as the initial cost of the plant decreases with a feed in tariff of USD 0.078 per kWh the project will be highly attractive financially and economically. This study also performs an environmental GHG emissions analysis and it is found that some 48,562 tons of CO2 per year, which equivalent to without consuming 112,935 barrels of crude oil.
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