GE Philippines mulls entry into hydropower

Danessa Rivera - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Global energy solutions provider GE is looking at opportunities in hydropower and battery storage in the Philippine  energy sector.

In an interview yesterday, GE Philippines chief executive officer Jose Victor Emmanuel de Dios said the company is focusing on renewable energy (RE), gas and coal technologies.

For the Philippines, in particular, it is concentrating on the hydropower space.

“We’re trying to see pump storage facilities in the country.  We’re looking at opportunities (to provide equipment),” De Dios said.

One interesting project for GE is the rehabilitation of the Agus hydroelectric power plant.

State-run National Power Corp. (Napocor) is bidding out the contract to do the feasibility study on the facility’s rehabilitation.

The feasibility study will take 48 weeks or roughly a year to complete after which the rehabilitation will follow.

The Agus power complex has an installed capacity of 728.1 megawatts (MW), the biggest coming from Agus VI with 200 MW. It is the oldest facility, commissioned in 1953.

The government’s rehabilitation project is aimed at extending the facilities’ service life by 30 more years and to increase the plants’ reliability and availability.

Meanwhile, GE is also seeing growing interest in battery storage in the region, including the Philippines, De Dios said.

“We’re looking to pilot a four megawatt-hour (MWh) battery energy storage in the Philippines and other Southeast Asian countries as well as Australia,” he said.

GE provides solutions for hydropower generation including the broadest range of hydro solutions and services: from water to wire, from individual equipment to complete turnkey solutions, for new plants and the installed base.

It has the world’s largest installed base of pumped hydro power in operation or construction equipped with GE techno-logy, amounting to 48 gigawatts.

For battery energy storage, it offers new application flexibility and unlocks new business value across the energy value chain, from conventional power generation, transmission and distribution, and renewable power, to industrial and commercial sectors.

GE’s presence in the country started in 1890 when GE’S predecessor, the Thomas Houston Electric Co. installed the first electric streetlights on Real Street in Manila.

From then on, GE steadily increased its commitment to the country by incorporating a wholly-owned subsidiary GE Philippines in October 1935 to engage in a broad range of manufacturing, trading and service businesses.

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