CAGAYAN DE ORO (MindaNews/23 November)—Construction of the P30-billion coal plant of the Gotianun family’s Filinvest Development Corp. (FDC) began last Wednesday with the groundbreaking ceremony attended by local officials in Villanueva town, Misamis Oriental.
Jonathan Gotianun, FDC Utilities Inc. chair, said the 405-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant is scheduled for test commissioning in June 2015 with the commercial operation targeted in September 2016.
“This power plant will be the power engine for growth in Mindanao in the next few years, “ Gotianun told local officials.
FDC formed the FDC Misamis Power Corp. to undertake the development and manage the operation of the coal plant located in a 82-hectare property inside the Phividec Industrial Estate in Villanueva town.
The company signed a lease agreement with the Phividec Industrial Authority after it completed the technical and financial study of the coal plant project early this year.
The power plant would be the second coal plant to rise inside the 3,000-hectare Phividec estate.
STEAG State Power Corp. operates a 210-MW coal plant in the industrial estate since November 2006.
Misamis Oriental Gov. Yevgeny Emano welcomed the investment of the Gotianun family but urged them “to do their best to protect the coastal seas of Misamis Oriental.”
“Most of our people in 23 of 24 municipalities are fishermen. The sea is their life. Please do your best to protect it,” Emano said.
Emano said the coal plant would be a welcome addition to Mindanao’s power grid that still needs more sources of electricity.
The Department of Energy had approved the construction of coal plants to answer Mindanao’s power requirement until 2030.
The 300-MW coal plant of Therma South Inc., a subsidiary of AboitizPower Corp., is expected go on commercial stream in 2015. The project is located in the boundary of Davao City and Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur.
The Alcantara-led Sarangani Energy Corp. is also building a 200-MW coal plant in Maasim, Sarangani. The first phase of 100 MW is expected to operate also in 2015. (Froilan Gallardo/MindaNews)