The Philippines is assured of 5,000 megawatts (MW) of new power-generation capacity between this year and 2020, with coal power plants still dominating the power mix.
In the 2017-2020 list of committed power projects released by the Department of Energy (DOE), the bulk of the capacity will come from Luzon. The DOE data is as of January 2017.
Of the 3,537.915 MW of capacity that will come on-stream this year in Luzon, 2,720 MW will be sourced from coal-fired power plants, 65 0 MW from natural gas, 62.5 MW from hydro, 43 MW from geothermal, 29.515 MW from solar, 22.9 MW from biomass and 10 MW from battery storage.
The Luzon data indicates that over 1,400 MW of the capacity is targeted either for commercial operation or commissioning this year. These include the coal power projects of SMC Consolidated Power Corp. in Limay, Bataan, (300 MW) and Pagbilao Energy Corp. in Quezon (420 MW).
Energy World Corp. is targeting the commissioning of its 650-MW gas project in Pagbilao, Quezon, in June for Unit 1, September for Unit 2 and December for Unit 3.
For solar, the committed power projects with target commercial operation for the year are the 18 MW of Next Generation Power Technology Corp. in Mari-veles, Bataan; 1.675 MW of CW Marketing & Development Corp. in Santa Rosa, Laguna; 3.82 MW of SPARC Solar Powered Agri-Rural Communities Corp. in San Rafael, Bulacan; and 5.02 MW of SPARC in Morong, Bataan.
A 1-MW solar project of Bosung Solartec Inc. in Ilocos Norte is targeted for commissioning this year.
A 12-MW geothermal plant in Batangas by Maibarara Geothermal Inc. is scheduled for commercial operations in August this year.
The biomass projects lined up for target testing and commissioning this year are the 1.5 MW of Asian Carbon Neutral Power Corp. in Tarlac; the 4.5 MW of Bicol Biomass Energy Corp. in Camarines Sur; the 6.1 MW of AseaGas Corp. in Batangas; and the 10.8 MW of San Jose City I Power Corp. in Nueva Ecija.
The battery storage of AES Philippines Power Partners Co. in Zambales will be operational in December this year.
These power projects are on top of the new ones that recently started delivering power to the grid. These include the 414-MW San Gabriel and the 87-MW Avion gas plants of the Lopez group.
In the Visayas 271.77 MW of new capacity will come on stream in 2017 to 2020. Of this capacity, coal is 135 MW; oil-based 8 MW; geothermal, 50 MW; hydro 13.1 MW; and solar 65.67 MW. The power projects in the Visayas that will come on line this year are the 8-MW diesel power plant of Emergreen Power Development and Management Inc. in Negros; the 50-MW geothermal plant of Biliran Geothermal Inc.; and the 6.67-MW solar project of Cosmo Solar Energy Inc. in Iloilo.
In Mindanao the committed power projects will reach 1,267.94 MW. Coal projects are 1,090 MW; oil at 29.54 MW; hydro at 134.2 MW; and biomass at 14.2 MW.
The coal projects that are targeted for commissioning and commercial operations this year are San Miguel Consolidated Power Corp.’s 150 MW in Malita, Davao; 135 MW of FDC Utilities Inc. in Misamis Oriental; and 165 MW of Minergy Coal Corp. in Misamis Oriental.
For oil-based power projects, a 13.94-MW project of Peakpower Soccsargen Inc. in South Cotabato; 5.2 MW of Peakpower San Francisco Inc. in Agusan del Sur; and the 10.4 MW of Peakpower Bukidnon Inc. will come on line this year.
The hydropower projects for the year in Mindanao are as follows: 2.4 MW of Euro Hydro Power Holdings Inc. in Compostela Valley; 43.4 MW of Hedcor Bukidnon Inc.; 25.4 MW of Hedcor Bukidnon; and 25 MW of Agusan Power Corp.
The biomass-power projects are the 1.6 MW, 2.6 MW and 10 MW of Philipine Trade Center Inc. Green Earth Enersource Corp., and Lamsan Power Corp., respectively.
Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi sees more renewable energy (RE), particularly solar, contributing more in meeting the power requirements of the Philippines in the years to come.
“Currently, the country’s power demand is at 13,000 MW and our supply is barely 14,000 MW, hence we need more power, as well as reserve power,” Cusi said.
Technology neutral, the DOE nonetheless sees the continuous increase of solar power in the years to come, especially in helping attain the 25-percent ideal power-reserve requirement of the country.
Cusi said the RE share of the country now stands at around 32 percent, which is the highest in the Southeast Asian region.
“We are mandated to secure sufficient, quality, reliable and reasonably priced electricity, and to develop our indigenous energy resources, thus, we are open to any technology to achieve these objectives,” Cusi said.
Last week Cusi attended the groundbreaking of a 150-MW solar-power project in Concepcion, Tarlac. According to the project proponent Solar Power Philippines, the solar farm will use Philippine-made solar panels and could power around 300,000 households once completed later this year.
“The power storage of the plant’s proponent is a welcome development for the DOE and for the country, because if solar can be stored already, we can source more of our power from solar energy,” Cusi said.