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AboitizPower studies LNG project

ABOITIZ POWER CORP.  (AboitizPower) is considering putting up an additional capacity of 1,200 megawatts (MW) through liquefied natural gas (LNG), its top official said.

“We have land, that’s why we are actually doing the feasibility studies for our 1,200-MW LNG that would probably be… that we are trying to schedule to come in to meet a baseload requirement by 2028 to 2030,” Emmanuel V. Rubio, president and chief executive officer of AboitizPower, said in an ANC interview on Wednesday.

Mr. Rubio said that in the short- to medium-term, LNG is a viable option although LNG prices are currently at a premium.

“But later on, there’s really no other option but to actually build LNG — that is the only way,” he said. “For us, the obvious location would be Pagbilao. We are the administrator for the Pagbilao plants.”

Pagbilao Energy Corp. is a joint venture between AboitizPower and TeaM Energy Corp. where they operate Pagbilao unit 3 in Ibabang Polo, Isla Grande, Quezon province. Pagbilao units 1 and 2 are being managed by AboitizPower’s Therma Luzon, Inc.

Mr. Rubio did not disclose the estimated investment cost for the company’s LNG venture as the company has yet to finalize it at the moment.

“There are a number of options [and] plant configurations. Should we go to 1,200 MW right away or should we go for 600 MW first? All of these are being considered,” he said.

AboitizPower has also announced its 10-year energy transition strategy to diversify its portfolio mix with 50:50 renewable energy and thermal capacities by 2030. The energy company is on track to reach this goal, Mr. Rubio said.

He also said that AboitizPower is looking at offshore wind to add to its renewable energy targets.

“[For] onshore, we actually announced the partnership with Mainstream Renewable Power. Offshore wind, we are monitoring although we are in discussion with a number of global players as well,” Mr. Rubio said.

“We believe that the levelized cost of electricity for offshore wind is still quite high. The technology will further improve and we’ll see it to be more competitive in the next three to four years. It will become a significant player, a participant in the portfolio mix,” he added.

AboitizPower also continues to discuss with several providers of small modular reactors (SMRs), Mr. Rubio said.

“I personally believe that SMRs will have a role to play in the Philippine energy setting,” he said, citing news that President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. and Department of Energy officials met with NuScale Power Corp.

In a meeting with Mr. Marcos, representatives from NuScale reportedly expressed their interest in investing in the Philippines. NuScale is one of the companies AboitizPower is talking to.

NuScale describes itself as the global leader in SMR technology. It has existing projects in Utah, Romania, Indonesia, and Poland.

“I think the timeline will still be around mid-2035 when we can see this to be operating in the Philippines,” Mr. Rubio said. — Ashley Erika O. Jose

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