22 October 2012 in Philippines News Agency
Green Power taps China firm to construct two multi-fueled biomass plants in Visayas
Green Power Panay Phils. Inc., (GPPPI), a subsidiary of Global Green Power PLC Corp., (GGPC) has tapped First Northeast Electric Power Engineering Co. (NEPC) of China in the building of its planned two 17.5-megawatt (MW) multi-fueled biomass plants in the Visayas.
The contract would allow Green Power to start constructing the plant to be located in its eight-hectare site in Barangay Calabaguan in Mina, Iloilo.
The EPC contract involves land preparation, civil engineering and detailed engineering design. Mobilization for this stage of the project will start on Nov. 28 while the site work will begin on Dec. 12.
The first 17.5-MW GPPPI-1 will cost about P2.051 billion and P2.605 billion for the second plant with the targeted commissioning date of 2015 for both projects.
Brig. Gen. (retired) Ramon Santos, the former Undersecretary of the Department of Energy for Renewable Energy Development, and now a director of GGPC and GPPPI said the project "is a very exciting development for the nation as a whole and our Kababayan due to the tremendous socio-economic benefits afforded by this and our future biomass power plants planned in Mindanao and Luzon".
The project will utilize agricultural and food processing wastes such as rice straw, sugar cane wastes and rice husks that have historically either been burned, causing emission of carbon dioxide, or left to rot in the field causing methane; both green house gases that significantly contribute towards climate change and global warming.
"The project will provide significant employment and poverty alleviation within the province of Iloilo through the provision of additional income to both the farming and local communities whilst delivering clean, renewable, decentralized, base-load power generation," Santos said.
Maribeth de Montaigne, president of GPPPI said that "although the company will also access the Renewable Energy Act of 2008 Feed-in-Tariff for biomass recently approved by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) at P6.63 per kilowatt hour, the company has also executed Power Purchase Agreement's with local electric cooperatives ILECO 1 and ILECO 2 for 3 MW and 7 MW of power, respectively.
"Submissions made to the ERC by ILECO 2, ILECO 1 and Green Power Panay Philippines Inc., state that the incorporation of GPPPI’s power within the distribution networks of the electric cooperatives will lower the average rate of electricity to the cooperatives consumers by an estimated 16%. This clearly shows that electricity generated by thermal biomass is a clean, renewable and competitive solution to the countries energy needs whilst lessening the countries dependence on imported coal and oil-based fuels”.
She also said: "As both the FiT and the Power Purchase Agreements executed with the electric cooperatives do not have fuel pass through costs to consumers, and that GPPPI biomass fuel rate increases are based on Philippines Consumer Price Index (CPI), this will ensure that cheaper electricity is not only provided now, but also over the next 20-year term of the FiT and 25-year term of the PPAs."
Steven Waterfield, GGPC managing director said that the project was realized through the development of strong partnerships with its host electric cooperatives and Iloilo farming community, local government, led by Mayor Lidia Grabato, the provincial governor of Iloilo Arthur Defensor Sr., as well as local Congressman Arthur Defensor Jr., of the Iloilo 3rd District where the Panay power plant is being built.
GGPC, the parent firm of GPPPI, have submitted plans to the Department of Energy for additional power plants in Luzon and Mindanao.
GGPC's subsidiary Green Power Nueva Ecija Philippines Inc. has already been granted its Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) and Biomass Renewable Energy Contract (BREOC) while the 35-MW Green Power Bukidnon Philippines Inc., power plant is under final assessment by the DOE.
The documents for the 30-MW Green Power Cagayan Philippines Inc., on the other hand, was submitted for DOE validation in September 2012.
GGPC targets the development of 360 MW of thermal, multi-fuelled biomass power plants throughout the Philippine over the next six years.