ABOITIZ Power Corp. (AboitizPower) said on Thursday that the rated capacity of its Binga hydroelectric power plant in Benguet operated by its unit SN Aboitiz Power-Benguet Inc. has effectively increased to 140 megawatts from 125.8 MW previously.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE), Aboitiz Power said it was advised by SN Aboitiz Power-Benguet, Inc. that “it received a copy of the amended Certificate of Compliance (COC) dated April 6, 2015 from the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) for all four units of the Binga Hydroelectric Power Plant (Binga HEPP) located at Brgy. Tinongdan, Itogon, Benguet.”
“The amendment reflects the increase of Binga HEPP’s capacity from 125.8 megawatts (31.45 MW for each of the four units) to 140 MW (35 MW each) following uprating work that began on December 2, 2014 and completed on February 23, 2015,” the statement said.
The uprating was a result of commissioning tests that showed the Binga HEPP could generate as much as 35 MW per unit at “rated head,” or the water depth for which a hydroelectric generator and turbines were designed.
“Binga HEPP was uprated to its maximum capacity without changing technically much of
the existing equipment,” AboitizPower said.
The plant has an economic life of 48 years.
The COC is valid for five years, reckoned from March 12, 2012 (the date of the approved COC for Unit 4, the first unit to be re-powered) or until March 12, 2017.
SN Aboitiz Power-Benguet is the owner and operator of the Ambuklao-Binga Hydroelectric Power Complex, consisting of the 105-MW Ambuklao Plant located in Bokod, Benguet and the 140-MW Binga Hydroelectric Power Plant located in Itogon, Benguet.
Built four years after Ambuklao, the Binga facility was also constructed for power generation and flood control and lies 19 kilometers downstream of Ambuklao.
The electricity generated by Binga is traded at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM). It is also capable of providing ancillary services necessary for the grid’s maintenance.