CITY Local Environment and Natural Resources Office (Clenro) chief Edwin Dael is urging officials of the Cagayan de Oro Corn Products Inc. to explain just where they intend to source the fuel requirements of the proposed power plant, saying the proposal to run the plant on biomass may just be a ploy.
Dael said the sheer volume of fuel needed to run the proposed plant may be impossible to get locally as the proposed six-megawatt power plant would need about 570 tons of fuel daily to operate at full capacity.
"Our concern is, where will they get the biomass supply,” Dael asked.
“We have actually been waiting for their report as to their supplier but we have received nothing," Dael said.
Dael said while representatives of Cagayan de Oro Corn Products have been vague on the subject of where they intend to source the organic wastes, they have nevertheless signified that they may resort to coal if the raw materials needed to produce biomass is insufficient.
For this reason, Dael said he suspects that the plant will be primarily coal-fired instead of the proponents earlier pronouncements on the contrary.
Dael said because of this, the Clenro, together with other environmentalists, is now planning to draft a position paper to be presented to the City Council, which will present the negative effects of a coal-fired power plant, especially one that is close to heavily populated areas.
Dael said his office and environmental watchdog Sulog also plan to file a Writ of Kalikasan at the Court of Appeals.
A Writ of Kalikasan is a legal remedy for persons whose constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology is violated, or threatened with violation by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee, or private individual or entity, involving environmental damage of such magnitude as to prejudice the life, health, or property of inhabitants in two or more cities or provinces.
If granted by the CA, the proponents of the project may be ordered to discontinue the project and direct government agencies to strictly monitor compliance to the Court order.
The Cagayan de Oro Corn Products, which plans to build the power plant in its complex in Barangay Tablon, had earlier sought the endorsement of Councilor Zaldy Ocon.
Ocon, chair of the City Council’s environment committee, endorsed the proposal to the council after being assured that the power plant will not be run on coal.