SMC Global investing $1.02 billion for LNG plant

Danessa Rivera - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — SMC Global Power Holdings Corp., the power unit of diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC), is investing up to $1.02 billion for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) power plant in Cebu to augment baseload power in the grid.

In a filing with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), its wholly owned unit Converge Power Generation Corp. (CPGC) proposed a 600-MW LNG Combined Cycle Power Plant Project  in Barangays Poblacion and Looc, Lapu-Lapu, Cebu.

It will be built within the 26.16-hectare property leased from Keppel Cebu Shipyard Land Inc. and National Development Co.

CPGC said the project is estimated to cost $1.5 million to $1.7 million per MW, or $900 million to $1.02 billion.

Project construction will take about five years, with pre-engineering works to be done within the second quarter and full swing construction targeted to start in the third quarter.

Start up and commissioning is scheduled to commence in the fourth quarter of 2023, while commercial operations is slated in the second quarter of 2024.

CPGC said the project aims to help augment demand for reliable and affordable power supply.

“Other than being able to provide electricity to households and businesses, it will be contributing to national development,” it said.

Based on the Power Development Plan 2017-2040 of the Department of Energy (DOE), the country’s electricity demand is projected to grow by approximately five percent per year.

“The 600-MW additional capacity will support the program of the DOE in ensuring stable power supply for the Philippines. The (Environmental Compliance Certificate) ECC to be acquired for this project will ensure that the project is compliant with regulatory and industry laws and standards,” CPGC said.

In July last year, the DOE cleared the conduct of a grid impact study on CPGC’s 143.9-MW liquefied natural gas power plant in Poblacion, Lapu-Lapu City.

Power firms need to secure GIS clearance first before construction. The GIS is necessary in determining if the electricity to be generated by the power project can be absorbed by the grid.

Meanwhile, the DENR-Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) has scheduled a public scoping activity on May 4 for CPGC’s proposed LNG power project.

The bureau said the public scoping is an early stage in the environmental impact assessment process where the proponents aim to provide an overview of the proposed project.

It also seeks to present proposed action, gather issues and concerns and other relevant information to provide the scope of work and terms of reference for the preparation of environmental impact statement.

The CPGC project adds to the growing list of LNG projects of SMC Global.

SMC Global is also working on a 1,300-MW LNG combined cycle plant in Batangas City, which will provide clean and stable power to Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) over the next 20 years, beginning 2024.

Prestige Power Resources Inc. (PPRI), a subsidiary, is planning to put up a 600-MW LNG combined cycle power plant in Brgy. Tugas, Tabango, Leyte.

Through unit Reliance Energy Development Inc. (REDI), it is also proposing a 4x75-MW LNG Combined Cycle Power Plant within the San Carlos City Ecozone in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental, which has an investment cost of P18.5 billion.

to build small-scale LNG plants in eight to 10 islands in the Visayas and Mindanao regions to boost rural electrification.

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