Power generation capacity commitments hit 5,198MW

by Riza T. Olchondra, January 3, 2015
from Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines–The Department of Energy (DOE) said investors in the energy sector had committed a total of 5,198.40 megawatts in power capacity from various projects up to 2020.

Much of the project commitments are small- to medium-scale with a few large ones, notably in power-starved Luzon and Mindanao. Among the largest of the projects pledged are the 420-MW Pagbilao coal-fired power plant in Quezon province; the 500-MW San Buenaventura coal-fired project, also in Quezon province; and the 540-MW Kauswagan coal-fired power plant in Lanao del Norte province, according to DOE data. All three are estimated to cost about $1 billion.

The 420-MW project of the Pagbilao Energy Corp. (the project company of Japanese-led TeaM Energy Corp. and Aboitiz-led Therma Luzon Inc.) will be co-located with the existing 735-MW Pagbilao power station and is set to be completed in 2018.

The 500-MW San Buenaventura coal fired power plant project of the San Buenaventura Power Ltd. Co. or SBPL (a joint venture of Meralco PowerGen or MGen and Thai-led New Growth BV) is targeted for completion in late 2017 to early 2018. MGen is the power generation arm of Manila Electric Co. New Growth BV is a wholly owned subsidiary of Electricity Generating Public Co. Ltd. (EGCO) of Thailand, partly owned by Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT).

The 540-MW Kauswagan power project by GN Power Kauswagan Ltd. Co. is set to be finished in 2017, according to DOE. GN Power Kauswagan is a limited partnership owned by Ayala Corp. unit AC Energy Holdings, Inc., the Philippine Investment Alliance for Infrastructure, or PINAI, Fund, and Power Partners Ltd. Co.

The DOE said it was closely monitoring the completion of power infrastructure projects in the country.

Secretary Carlos Jericho L. Petilla said power generation across the nation remained “robust” but efforts were continuing to manage consumption in order to balance supply with demand. The DOE is thus launching this year an information campaign on energy savings, he said.

In 2014, the department launched the National Consumers Welfare Month (NCWM) and the transparency websites of http://www.kuryente.org.ph and http://www.wattmatters.org.ph.

The Kuryente website serves as a database of information on the energy sector while the WattMatters website serves as a tool in promoting efficient energy utilization by providing intelligent energy choices particularly in the operation of appliances.

For the strengthening of the power sector, the DOE said it was coordinating with the National Electrification Administration (NEA), the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) and other stakeholders has been working on resolving financial, management, and other difficulties of electric cooperatives (ECs) nationwide. Among the ECs attended to in 2014 were the Abra Electric Cooperative or ABRECO, Albay Electric Cooperative or ALECO, and the Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative or Daneco.

The DOE also said it was monitoring power restoration efforts in areas affected by the recent typhoons together with NEA and National Grid Corporation of the Philippines or NGCP.

With the anticipated power crisis in the summer of 2015, the DOE said it had been actively promoting the introduction of the Interruptible Load Program (ILP) in Luzon and proposed the passage of a joint resolution to provide additional generating capacities. With 36 establishments and growing, ILP volunteers will be of significant assistance in the generation of power in Luzon in the coming summer months.

For the long term, the DOE said, the upcoming policy issuance on Demand Aggregation and Supply Auctioning or DASAP will support the requirements of distribution utilities by offering a platform for matching aggregated demand with power project proponents.

Also in the pipeline is the launch of the Open and Competitive Selection Process or OCSP in early 2015 for the bidding of RE service contracts throughout the country particularly those endorsed by the local government units.

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