PH gets P440-M JICA grants for power projects

Cai U. Ordinario
Two mini hydropower plants will constructed in Ifugao and Isabela

MANILA, Philippines – The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is extending P439.64-million grants, which will be used to fund mini hydropower plant projects in Ifugao and Isabela. 

In a statement on Wednesday, May 1, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said the grants would be spent for the construction of an 810-kilowatt mini hydropwer plant in Ifugao, and 45-kilowatt mini hydropower plant in Isabela.

The Ifugao plant will cost P377.5 million, while the one in Isabela will be worth P62.14 million. 

“Harnessing hydropower potentials in the countryside will help the government in its strategy of intensifying the development and use of renewable and environment-friendly alternative energy resources,” NEDA Deputy Director-General Rolando Tungpalan said.

The Ifugao plant will be located in Barangay Haliap, Asipulo. Aside from the construction of the plant, the power project will cover the repair of existing irrigation facilities, and training of operators and plant supervisors.

The Department of Energy (DOE) and the Provincial Government of Ifugao will implement the project from May 2013 until January or February 2015.

“This project will then provide a reliable source of fund for the preservation and rehabilitation of Ifugao’s rice terraces. Also, the province is now developing its native rice varieties raised in its terraces for both the domestic and export markets,” Tungpalan said.

The mini hydropower plant project in Isabela, on the other hand, will involve the construction of a substation, transmission facilities, a diversion canal, and power house.

The DOE and the National Irrigation Administration will implement the project from May 2013 until November 2014.

“The need for sustainable sources of electric power in these two provinces in Northern Luzon is important considering these are among the resource-rich but income-poor areas in country,” he said.

Tungpalan said the projects are aligned with the strategies in the Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016, which is currently being updated. –

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