EDC hands over electrification funds to Negros Oriental
Lopez-led Energy Development Corp. (EDC) has turned over to Negros Oriental 1 Electric Cooperative a total of P4.16 million for electrification funds, which is part of the province’s share in power generation income for hosting geothermal power plants.
The company operates in Valencia town its 222.5-megawatt Southern Negros geothermal facility, including the assets of its subsidiary Green Core Geothermal Inc. (GCGI).
By law, power plant operators are required to directly provide to host communities one centavo per kilowatt-hour of the total electricity sales.
Of this share, half is intended to be allocated to the host area’s electrification fund. The generation companies are required to turn over this fund to concerned distribution utilities, which are responsible for opening a trust account and for administering the fund.
“Being able to directly disburse our partner communities’ benefits as hosts to our geothermal facilities provides us with the opportunity to forge a stronger partnership with them as we work together to not only provide reliable, clean, stable power to more Negrosanons but to also help them thrive even during this COVID-19 pandemic,” said Norreen G. Bautista, head of EDC’s corporate social responsibility team in Negros.
The power plants in Negros Oriental are part of EDC’s 1,480-MW portfolio, which accounts for 20 percent of the country’s total installed renewable energy power generation capacity.
In a related development, EDC has forged an agreement with American firm GreenFire Energy Inc. to perform a commercial retrofit that will restore and generate steam from an idle geothermal well in EDC’s Mahanagdong geothermal facility in Leyte.
The idle geothermal well has not been usable due to the high level of non-condensable gases produced there. The heat mining system will correct this and meet its surface system pressure requirements once it is installed and commissioned in the fourth quarter of 2021.
“We have been looking at GreenFire Energy’s closed-loop approach to geothermal for some time and are happy to see the progress,” EDC senior vice president Liberato S. Virata said.
“While we see potential for the technology in large greenfield projects too, we see the fast payback on well retrofits as the easiest way to start,” said Virata, who also heads EDC’s facilities operations and maintenance group.
GreenFire Energy and EDC are also working together to analyze other unproductive geothermal wells and less productive geothermal fields where the technology may be used.
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