ABOITIZPOWER subsidiary Therma South Inc. is set to deliver on its promise to complete its 300mw baseload power plant in Davao City by first half of 2015.
Bobby Orig, first vice president for Mindanao Affairs, said the power plant is close to 50-percent complete, with some 2,000 workers on site, many working round-the-clock, to complete the power plant.
"We are fully committed in delivering our power to our customers on time and help relieve Mindanaoans of the debilitating effects of the Mindanao power crisis," Orig said.
The P25-billion power plant started its site preparation works in late 2011 after it received approval from the Davao City Council. Full construction started in 2012. A visit to the site by Mindanao media showed that the super-structure of the first of two 150-MW power plant units has already been erected, while foundation works for the second unit has been completed.
A coal dome -- a first of its kind in the Philippines -- is also being constructed. As fulfillment of its environmental conditions set by the DENR, Therma South is building a fully-enclosed dome to secure and contain its coal supply.
More steel structures are being delivered on the site, between Binugao, Davao City and Inawayan, Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur to complete the other parts of the power plant complex.
"We are happy that close to 20 electric cooperatives and distribution utilities in Mindanao have put their trust on AboitizPower and we will live up to our promise in delivering a modern, safe and reliable power plant that will make Mindanao proud," Orig said.
Despite an expanding economy and population, no major power plant has been built in Mindanao since 2007. With demand for power increasing and no additional supply, the island has been facing almost daily power shortages since 2011.
More than 50 percent of Mindanao's power supply comes from hydro power coming out of Lake Lanao, which is vulnerable during summer months and long dry spells.
Coal is seen as an ideal complement to hydro power, to ensure that Mindanao has reliable baseload power than can run 24/7 no matter the weather condition, while utilizing its hydro resources.
If not arrested, the power shortage in Mindanao is projected to hit 484MW by 2015, enough to cut off power supply to the major cities of Davao, General Santos, Cagayan de Oro, Butuan and Zamboanga.