First Geothermal Power Plant Under Aquino Administration Breaks Ground in Sto Tomas, Batangas
April 30, 2012
The country’s newest geothermal power station in five years, and the first under the current Aquino Administration, broke ground on Friday, April 27 in simple ceremonies conducted in Barangay San Rafael, Sto Tomas Batangas. Maibarara Geothermal, Inc. (MGI), the joint-venture firm 65% owned by PetroGreen Energy Corp. , the 100% subsidiary of PetroEnergy Resources Corp., Trans-Asial Oil & Energy Development Corp. (25%), and government-owned PNOC-RC (10%), led the ceremonial ground breaking signalling the physical start of the power plant construction with Sto Tomas Mayor Renato Federico and DOE Undersecretary Jose M. Layug, Jr. as special guests.
The 20 MW Maibarara geothermal power project is an integrated steamfield and power plant facility that is expected to be operational by late 2013. It is the country’s newest geothermal power plant after the 49 MW Northern Negros plant commissioned in 2007. EEI Corporation is building the 1×20 MW power plant as EPC contractor with Fuji Electric of Japan supplying the major plant equipment and serving as the power plant O&M contractor. Design and construction of the steamfield pipelines are directly handled by MGI. The company secured a Php 2.40 Billion loan facility in September, 2011 from Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) and Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) to fund the construction of the Maibarara project’s steamfield pipelines, the power station, and the transmission facilities.
DOE Undersecretary Layug commended MGI for reaching another milestone with the groundbreaking, after earlier being cited as the first renewable energy (RE) project out of the more than 250 RE service contracts awarded under the 2008 RE Law to be declared commercial. Layug stated that the ground breaking for the 20 MW Maibarara geothermal project demonstrates firmly the Aquino administration’s focus and resolve in working with the private sector, local governments, and other national agencies to ensure the stability of the country’s power supply and infrastructure. He added that aside from meeting Luzon Grid energy requirements, the Maibarara project will help in generating jobs, increasing tax revenues, and government royalties to host communities and local government units.