JABONGA, Agusan del Norte (MindaNews / 12 July)—Amid rising demand for electricity, a 24.9-megawatt hydroelectric plant was inaugurated here Wednesday morning with the promise of bringing affordable and sustainable energy supply to consumers.
President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., who graced the event, said that initiatives like the Lake Mainit Hydroelectric Power Plant are most welcome as they help the country increase its energy supply and improve the energy mix by prioritizing the use of renewables.
“The development of this hydropower site is a defining step towards our goal of securing much-needed power for the people of Agusan del Norte and its neighboring areas by taking advantage of its water sources,” he said.
He also called on partners in the private sector to join in realizing the goal of advancing affordable, reliable, and clean energy.
“We assure you that this government will continue to improve bureaucratic processes in the energy sector to make it easier for the investors to come in,” the President said. “This lies at the very core of the eight-point socio-economic agenda as well as our commitment to mitigate the impact of climate change and combat other environmental threats,” he said.
Romulo Deferia Jr., technical services department manager of Agusan del Norte Electric Cooperative (ANECO), said that electricity cost would be reduced with the new energy source.
He said that the province is blessed because of its partnerships with firms specializing in renewable energy. This move, Deferia noted, will lower the cost of electricity.
“Today, renewables are way cheaper than diesel and coal,” he said.
Deferia added that their 69kv line would directly absorb the power generated by the plant; hence, it would no longer pass through the power lines of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines, eliminating transmission charges.
The power plant will reportedly provide approximately 100,871 megawatt hours of clean, affordable energy to 45,000 households in nearby communities.
The project is a partnership between the Filipino Markham Resources Corp. and the Japanese firm J-Power.
Takashi Jahana, executive managing officer and deputy director of the global power business division of J-Power, noted that aside from supplying electric power to the people in Mindanao island, the hydropower plant also aims to contribute to increasing renewable energy to 35% by 2030, as required by the country’s Power Development Plan 2020-2040.
“Markham Resource Corporation and J-Power are planning to develop further hydropower plants in the Philippines,” Jahana said, citing his company’s “abundant experiences of hydropower plants towards a carbon-free energy society in the future.”
Bounded by the provinces of Agusan del Norte and Surigao del Norte, Lake Mainit is considered as the country’s deepest lake and the fourth largest lake in the Philippines.
The lake is a natural reservoir for the Lake Mainit Hydroelectric Power Plant. (Ivy Marie Mangadlao / MindaNews)