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Maibarara geothermal plant in the Philippines reaches 600 GWh production milestone

Maibarara 12 MW expansion groundbreaking event, October 2016 (source: PetroEnergy)
Alexander Richter Alexander Richter 3 Nov 2017

After only three years and 8 months of operation, the 20 MW Maibarara geothermal power plant has reached the milestone of 600 GWh of electricity generated.

As part of the announcement on the expansion of the Maibarara plant expected to go online this December, operator Maibarara Geothermal has reported that a milestone has been reached.

The 20 MW geothermal plant has reached a production of 600 GWh of electricity, according to the PetroEnergy Resources Corporation, the major equity holder firm in the project’s corporate vehicle.

That magnitude of generated capacity was officially clocked in October 25 this year, barely three years and eight months from the start of commercial operations of the power facility.

Plant operator Maibarara Goethermal, Inc. (MGI) emphasized that such achievement manifests array of efficiency in the facility’s operations, including plant outages being kept down.

As emphasized by MGI President Francisco G. Delfin, “apart from the scheduled annual maintenance shutdowns, we have managed to minimize forced outages in the facility leading to very high capacity and availability factors.”

The project, which was recently conferred the much-coveted 2017 ASEAN Energy Awards being the Best Renewable Energy Project, was considerably a new development in an era when extraction of geothermal resources in the Philippines had already been turning a lot tougher.

It was a lull of 16 years of development in the sector before the Maibarara project came into fruition at commercial development phase; and was also considered a take-off point venture on that technology space since the passage of the country’s Renewable Energy Act.

The facility under MGI was a joint development of PetroGreen Energy Corporation of the Yuchengco Group, PHINMA Energy Corporation and that of state-run Philippine National Oil Company-Renewables Corporation.

The plant is currently advancing on its expansion phase for another 12MW capacity, targeted to be on commercial stream by December this year.

According to Paul Morala, MGI power plant manager, a revenue meter had just been installed recently at the Maibarara-2 geothermal project, indicating then that the asset is now moving headway into its full commercial operation.

The company executive added that the engineers of MGI and Manila Electric Company (Meralco) have also jointly and successfully completed the testing of the plant’s protection relays and circuit breakers; and also of the unit’s supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and direct transfer trip (DTT) functions.

Morala said their collaboration with the concerned industry entities as well as with the relevant government agencies, such as the Department of Energy and the Energy Regulatory Commission, will continue “as the unit’s commissioning and testing enter their final phases.”

Source: Manila Bulletin