DAVAO CITY: After years of severe energy shortages, Mindanao may finally say goodbye to massive rolling blackouts next year when several power plants kick in, President Benigno Aquino 3rd said on Thursday.
In fact, according to the President, Mindanao may even experience a power surplus in 2015 because two major plants, the coal-fired Therma South power plant in Davao del Sur that can generate 300 MW and the 200 MW Southern Mindanao coal-fired power plant in Sarangani will be operational.
“In terms of power, Mindanao is also looking at full recovery. In fact, the region might even have power security ahead of Luzon,” Aquino said at the Philippines Development Forum on Bangsamoro. “These two plants, among others, put us on track to have an energy surplus in Mindanao by 2015,” he added.
Mindanao has been experiencing energy shortage for years. At the height of the dry season in 2011, energy capacity dropped to as low as 827 MW, causing blackouts of up to 12 hours in most of Mindanao’s 22 provinces.
Industry sources said the region’s annual growth in power supply stands at 4.7 percent. Peak demand on the island stands at 1,328 MW as of September 1.
In 2009, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry said Mindanao needs an additional capacity of 100 MW every year to meet this demand.
Since 2009, however, only the 36-MW hydroelectric plant in Sibulan was added to the Mindanao grid.
The grid has a total capacity of 1,820 MW, but many of the ageing hydroelectric plants of the National Power Corporation are no longer operating at their full capacities.