Cusi seeks upgrade of coal plants

by Alena Mae S. Flores – June 13, 2017 at 08:22 pm

from Manila Standard Today

The Energy Department wants coal plants to upgrade their facilities and move towards cleaner technologies to secure the country’s long-tern power requirements.

“We’d like the latest technologies to be adopted by the existing plants,” Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said.

Many of the country’s coal power plants were built in the past two to three decades.

Some of the new power plants have invested in new technologies but the Philippines has yet to see its first ultra supercritical power plant, touted to be one of the most efficient clean coal technologies today.

“They have to improve their efficiencies, they have to improve carbon emissions. That’s what we’re trying to implement,” Cusi said.

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy, said it would be difficult to legislate the use of new technologies for power plants.

“When we talk about technologies, it’s difficult to legislate that because it’s moving so fast. My recommendation for policymakers is to really come up with a gold standard for coal-fired power plants,” Gatchalian said,

“There are a lot of new technologies coming in and so fast—supercritical… this is a great balancing role wherein at the end, consumers should not be overburdened by heavy pricing. This balancing role can be equipped with a higher standard in terms of coal technology,” the senator said.

Cusi last week  said the country needed an additional 43,765 megawatts by 2040 from 21,423 MW in 2016, with the bulk coming from base load power plants such as coal.