ABOUT 24 renewable energy projects are set to be constructed by power company Eco Enerhiya Ltd. in the country in the next five to 10 years.

Antonio Lopez, Eco Enerhiya director for business development, said the project with a total of 240 megawatt (MW) capacity is estimated to cost US$ 878.4 million.

For updates from around the country, follow Sun.Star on Twitter

He said they have started the construction of their first biomass project which has a total capacity of 10MW and costing US$36.6 million or P1.7 billion.

The project located in Bondoc Peninsula in Quezon province using coco husk and wood chips and expected to be commercially operational by June 2011.

"The biomass project in Quezon which is 10 MW is the first of a total of 24. The target is to put up 12 projects within five years. Once we have the first 10 MW then we will have our proof of concept," he said.

According to Lopez, they have already identified the possible sites of their 24 biomass projects and majority will be located in Mindanao.

"We have the sites for all 24 but different stages of development. Bulk of the sites will be in Mindanao," he said.

According to Mr. Lopez they are now in talks with Banco de Oro to finance the Quezon biomass project under the supervision of the Unisan Biogen Corp.

He said “Banco de Oro is interested in giving a loan of P1.2 billion or 70 percent of project cost depending on their due diligence. Our consortium of investors will provide around P500 million or 30 percent of the project cost."

Lopez further disclosed that they are also in talks with possible investors including PNOC Renewables Corp.

"We are still in negotiations with all the investors. Even PNOC Renewables is not yet a sure thing. What I can say is that it will be a mix of Filipino and foreign investors," Lopez said. (MSN/Sunnex)