By MYRNA M. VELASCO
The long delayed 650-megawatt (MW) Pagbilao gas-fired power facility of Energy World Corporation (EWC) has already applied for certificate of compliance (COC) or its license for the targeted commercial operations of the project.
The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) disclosed that the COC application was filed by project developer EWC April last year, although it has yet to make final notification to the regulatory body on its testing and commissioning activities.
ERC chairperson Agnes T. Devanadera said the gas-fired power facility has not been inspected yet, and she will be volunteering to do that task once the plant tangibly reaches commissioning phase.
“I’ll be the one to do the inspection,” the ERC chief told reporters, with her noting that based on the last information the regulatory body has gotten, the plant does not have point-to-point connection facility yet to underpin the transmission of its capacity to the grid.
Devanadera indicated that she will “look at all aspects of the project,” as there had also been previous concerns that the port development as a component of the facility might be traversing a “reservation area” proximate to the site of its liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal.
Sharon O. Montaner, officer-in-charge of the ERC’s Market Operations Service (MOS) qualified that EWC “applied for a COC, but we would still be notified before it reaches testing and commissioning, so we are monitoring it. Then after testing and commissioning, that’s the only time that we can do the inspection.”
The EWC project, which kicked off implementation in 2013, comprises of both a power generating facility of 650MW that will be developed in phases; and an onshore LNG terminal as facility support to its procurement of gas from offshore.
As designed, the facility was developed on a “pure merchant basis” – entailing then that the project sponsor will be latching on trading its generated capacity at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) as well as selling it to the contestable customers or those end-users with usage thresholds already covered by the Retail Competition and Open Access (RCOA) policy of the restructured electricity sector.
For the longest time, however, the project had hit roadblocks on the transmission facility connection that will ensure its generated capacity would be wheeled to the main power grid.
EWC secured government help in resolving the project’s dilemma on the point-to-point connection facility, but until last year, that has not been addressed.