• Guimaras tapped for P6.3-B wind power farm

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    ILOILO CITY: The Department of Energy (DOE) gave the go-ahead to Trans-Asia Oil and Energy Development Corp. for its P6.3-billion wind farm power project to be set up in barangays Cabano, Suclaran and M. Chavez in San Lorenzo town of Guimaras island province.

    The power generation arm of Phinma Group of Companies, Trans Asia’s wind power plant project faces the Guimaras-Negros Strait and will generate 54 megawatts. Construction is expected to start by July this year, according to the DOE Visayas Field Office.

    Project implementation will be done by phases and expected to be operational by the end of 2015. At its initial stage, Trans Asia will be putting up six wind turbine generators or towers in San Lorenzo that would generate at least two megawatts (MW) each.

    Six megawatts of the power capacity will be utilized by the province of Guimaras and the remaining supply will be sold to neighboring Iloilo. Besides the provision of stable power supply, the proposed wind farm is expected to bring in additional P60 million annually to the province and is also eyed as a tourist attraction on the island.

    DOE said the project will benefit Guimaras, Panay and other areas in the Visayas. The excess electricity produced will be exported to the nearby island of Panay through a submarine cable.

    The existing submarine cable that connects Guimaras to Panay has only a capacity of 5 MW but Trans Asia is willing to put up additional submarine cables so that electricity can be transmitted to other provinces.

    Besides the Guimaras project, Trans-Asia also has 11 other similar service contracts with an estimated capacity of 400 megawatts once developed. The wind projects will be the first to benefit from an incentive scheme that aims to ensure half the country’s energy comes from renewable sources by 2030.

    The company is also developing a 135-megawatt coal plant in Batangas and a 20-megawatt geothermal project in Batangas and Laguna.

    At present, Trans-Asia owns diesel plants on Guimaras Island that powers the Guimaras Electric Cooperative (Guilmelco), La Union and Bulacan. The company also administers and manages the 116-megawatt diesel plant of One Subic Power Generation Corp. in the former US naval base.

    The largest of the three wind farm projects will be set up in Burgos town by Energy Development Corp., an 87-MW project to cost $300 million. Two other wind projects are the 67.5MW set up by Alterenergy Wind One Corp. and the Trans-Asia Oil and Energy Development Corp. in Guimaras.

    The Philippines has an existing 33-megawatt wind power plant in Banggui, Ilocos Norte, set up in 2005 even before the renewable energy law was passed.

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