SARANGANI Energy Corp., a subsidiary of Alsons Power Corp., will start using coal for the hot testing phase of its 105-megawatt (MW) power plant in October, an official of the company said.
Nicandro Fucoy, vice president-business manager for coal operations of Alsons Consolidated Resources Inc.’s power business unit, said they are on track with the scheduled commissioning of the coal-fired power plant.
He said the company is fast-tracking construction of the plant in order to meet its timeline.
“We will start in October the commissioning or hot testing of the plant, meaning we will start using coal to test it,” Fucoy said.
Construction of the power plant’s first unit is already 98 percent complete. The plant is located at the economic zone of Maasim, Sarangani Province,
The project, which is expected to be operational in early 2016, will help address the power shortage in Mindanao.
“The power plant will give cheaper electricity and steady supply of dependable energy to the Mindanao grid,” said Fucoy.
Once completed, Fucoy said the Sarangani plant is expected to deliver power to the South Cotabato II Electric Cooperative (Socoteco II).
Socoteco II supplies electricity to General Santos City, Sarangani and the towns of Tupi, Polomolok and Tampakan in South Cotabato.
The National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) earlier reported that the Mindanao Grid has a 70-MW deficiency. This is due to reduced capacity because some power plants in the region are out of commission.
Korean firm Daelim Industrial Co. won the contract to build the first 105-MW unit of the 210-MW power plant complex of Alsons-controlled Sarangani Energy.
The project cost for the first phase, which includes the cost of putting up the common facilities, was pegged at $309 million.
Alsons has also started the bidding process for the engineering and procurement contract (EPC) for Unit 2, which will also have a generation capacity of 105 MW.
Fucoy said the company targets to close by the first quarter of 2016 the financing scheme for the second unit.