Group eyeing RE projects

THE 1-MINDANAO Energy Cooperative (1-Miecoop), a group composed of 35 cooperatives, is planning to set up 20-megawatt hydropower plant that would tap Agusan River.

Edgardo T. Silagan, chair of 1-Miecoop, said yesterday in Wednesdays @ Habi at Kape in Abreeza Mall that the project is estimated to cost $70 million as each megawatt would amount to $3..5 million.

The project, he said, will be primarily funded by the member cooperatives that have total assets of P20 billion.

“To pursue the plan, we recently wrote a letter of intent to the Department of Energy (DOE),” Silagan said. The cooperative, he said, needed the department’s approval for them to start processing the requirements like securing water rights from National Water Resources Board.

The group also is planning to set up 4.5-MW hydropower plant and 12-MW hydropower plant in Agusan.

Rhoda Ruth M. Pillerin, chief executive officer of Model Cooperative Network and member of the board of directors of 1-Miecoop, said they are focusing especially on renewable energy. They, she said, are pursuing the project “to democratize control of energy sector.”

The group, she said, is also planning to bid for the operation of state-owned Agus and Pulangui hydropower complexes once these would be finally privatized by the national government.

“The original intention is to mobilize money from the cooperatives. The consumers themselves would be the investors. If each client of the cooperative would contribute P1,000 in capital, we will have enough money to buy Agus and Pulangui,” Pillerin said.

The 1-Miecoop has already submitted its position paper for the acquisition of the complexes in Sept. last year, which was furnished to DOE and Office of the President.

Silagan said they hoped that President Rodrigo R. Duterte would be on their side to back and support their request. “If the president will favor us, there will be a big chance for us to acquire the complexes,” he said.

Mindanao Development Authority Assistant Secretary Romeo M. Montenegro said earlier that the government can earn about P50 billion in revenues for the privatization of Agus and Pulangui.

The two complexes, he said, are generating revenues of P6 billion-P8 billion a year

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