Big-ticket projects to increase power demand in C. Visayas

By: Futch Anthony V. Inso November 07,2018 - 11:05 PM

VILLAR/AUGUST 24,2017: DPWH Sec Mark Villar shows the plans for Metro Cebu Expressway from Naga City to Danao City during the Mandaue City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Business Summit at Mandani. (CDN PHOTO/TONEE DESPOJO)

With upcoming big-ticket projects in the pipeline for Central Visayas, investors are encouraged to venture into the power industry to meet the demand for electricity especially when these projects will be implemented and completed.

Lorna Manila, National Economic Development Authority in Central Visayas (Neda-7) Project Development Investment Programming and Budgeting Division chief, made this call during Wednesday’s Power 101 forum organized by Global Business Power (GBP) in Cebu City.

Manila presented 12 pipeline and proposed short and midterm projects for Region 7 that would require the supply of power.

“By itself, this pipeline and proposed projects, as well as their impact on economic development in the region, have implications on the requirement for power,” Manila said, adding that these projects would have large energy requirements.

These projects include the P10.1 billion New Cebu International Container Port in Tayud, Consolacion, the 28.018 billion Metro Cebu Expressway which will bypass along the hills of Metro Cebu area from Naga City to Danao City, the Mandaue-Consolacion-Liloan bypass road, Guadalupe-Lahug diversion road, Talisay-Minglanilla-Naga bypass road, Off-shore bridge connecting Tagbilaran and Panglao in Bohol, Cebu-Bohol Link bridge, Cebu-Negros Link bridge, Bohol-Leyte Link bridge, Metro-Cebu Circumferential road, Mandaue-Lapu-Lapu Link bridge (4th bridge), Urban Mass Rapid Transit (UMRT) coastal line and the UMRT Central Line.

“I have not yet presented the long term project here, but definitely these projects will have to be considered for the provision of power supply, not only for the project itself but for the projected economic growth in these areas,” she added.

DOE chief
Department of Energy (DOE)-Visayas Director Saul Gonzales also agreed with Neda-7’s statement.

“With this, we really need additional investment of power. Especially that there will be lots of construction and the trend of development is increasing. Power supply should go along with it,” Gonzales said.

Gonzales said that the demand for electricity in the Visayas would continue to increase, especially for the month of December this year.

He even said that as of Nov. 7, the department was on yellow alert, due to a low power reserve for the region.

As of November 6, at noontime, the power capacity for Visayas region was at 2,129 megaWatts (MW) with a forecasted peak demand of 1,898 MW and 231 MW of power reserves.

But in the evening (Nov. 6), Gonzales said that the power capacity has dropped to 1,976 MW while the demand has increased to 1,936 MW, with only 40 MW power reserves.

Gonzales said that a stable power supply could only be determined, if the power reserve in the region would be equivalent to the highest producing power plant.

He said that the ongoing maintenance shutdown of several power plants had contributed to the decline of power capacity in the region.

“One unit of KEPCO has shutdown and (the power plant of) Toledo power Corp., which has total power capacity of 200 MW for both power plants,” he added.

He, however, said that these power plants were expected to be operational again in the early part of December.

Safe levels
He also assured that the power supply in the region was still at comfortable and safe levels.

He said that there would be nothing to worry about only if the power plants in Panay Island would also shut down.

Based on their records as well, there are around 11 committed projects that will be implemented in Visayas from 2018 to 2025, that will augment to the power supply in the region.

These power plant projects have a total capacity of 775 MW, which will include biomass, coal, hydro, geothermal and oil-based power plants.

Their records added that in 2017, around 86.4 megawatts were also added to the power supply in the Visayas, after four diesel and solar power plants in Negros Oriental, Bohol, Iloilo and Cebu City became operational.

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