PNOC Renewables Corp. (PNOC-RC), a subsidiary of state-owned Philippine National Oil Co. (PNOC) proposed more funding for geothermal power exploration to the House of Representatives.
“We don’t have any more funding for geothermal, but we are seeking more funding because it is very promising, and it is baseload,” John J. Arenas, president and chief executive officer of PNOC-RC, told the House committee on energy.
Mr. Arenas said PNOC-RC is a part owner of a 32-megawatt (MW) geothermal plant in Laguna.
“We sought an Office of the Government Corporate Counsel opinion, and we were given the go ahead to produce power, especially with renewables,” Mr. Arenas said in response to a query by Nueva Ecija Rep. Rosanna V. Vergara.
“Under EPIRA (the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001), the government is not supposed to (be in) the generation sector,” Ms. Vergara said.
In 2021, renewable-based generating facilities accounted for 28.9% or 7,965 MW of the generating capacity. Of these, hydropower and geothermal accounted for 13.7% or 3,781 MW and 7.0% or 1,928 MW, respectively.
Mr. Arenas also said that the PNOC-RC is planning to develop a waste-to-energy plant in Baguio next year. — Ashley Erika O. Jose