Davao City council approves expansion of AboitizPower coal-fired plant

Subscribe Now March 25, 2014 at 09:54am

Aboitiz Power Corp. is more than doubling the capacity of its 300-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant project in Mindanao after securing approval from the Davao City Council.

In an e-mailed statement Monday, AboitizPower said the council, voting 22-2, approved its proposal to expand the baseload of subsidiary Therma South Inc.'s power plant project to 645 MW from 300 MW.

Therma South proposed the 300-MW project in 2011, saying then that there was a need for an additional power plant especially in the dry months when the Agus-Pulangi hydropower complex produces less power.

But Therma South president and chief operating officer Benjamin Cariaso Jr. was quoted on Monday as saying "we also have to look at the future energy demands of Mindanao."

"This expansion will ensure Mindanao will have enough power when demand catches up with supply again in 2017 and 2018," he added.

The first 300-MW capacity of Therma South is set for commercial operations in the first half of 2015 and is almost contracted out to distribution utilities and electric cooperatives in the region.

Meanwhile, the expansion is set for completion in 2017 and 2018, when demand for power in Mindanao will be expected to exceed supply once again.

"AboitizPower's main interest in expanding this plant is to help Mindanao avoid repeating the big problem of the past where it failed to build the power plants needed before the demand for power kicked in," Manuel Orig, AboitizPower first vice president for Mindanao affairs said in the same statement.

To meet national and international environment and health standards, the power plant will be using circulating fluidized-bed technology.

The company will also use 1,000 hectares of land for a tree-planting and watershed program with the Matigsalog indigenous peoples in Davao City's Barangay Marilog.

Source: gmanetwork.com

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