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Lalawinan Hydro Project Begins

The tandem of Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) and Repower Energy Development Corp. has started constructing a three-megawatt (MW) hydropower plant in Lalawinan, Quezon.

Pure Meridian Hydropower Corp. (PMHC), the joint venture firm, will spend P700 million to build the project, which will generate over 200 jobs during construction  –  mostly hired from the local community.

Once completed, total annual power generation will be over 16 gigawatt hours from this renewable energy source.

The company will avail of the run-of-river hydropower feed-in tariff (FIT) rate of P5.90 per kilowatt-hour for the project.

The Lalawinan hydropower facility is the second project under the Meralco-Repower partnership, PMHC chairman Alfredo Panlilio said.

Last December, the Pulanai mini-hydropower project in Bukidnon had its groundbreaking, attended by President Duterte and Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi.

“We reiterate our earlier pronouncement that our investments in the various run-of-river mini-hydro projects are a manifestation of our unwavering commitment to support the development of the renewable energy sector. It is our hope that these various initiatives will contribute in providing a stable, clean and reliable energy source,” Panlilio said.

The project also keeps the group focused on putting forward knowledge on run-of-river technology as the best renewable energy resource due to its near baseload nature, PMHC and Pure Energy Holdings Corp. chief executive officer Dexter Tiu said.

“Our goal is to provide sustainable alternatives to balance the country’s over dependence on fossil fuels, while preserving our natural watersheds,” he said.

Pure Energy, Repower’s parent firm, recently partnered with World Wide Fund to identify key areas for potential run of river hydropower development as well as launch a campaign to promote awareness and preservation of the watersheds.

“We are committed to help save our last remaining Sierra Madre rainforest and wildlife habitat here in Quezon, which is our humble way of participating in the war on climate change,” Tiu said.

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