PNOC lights up 100 households

ABOUT 100 households in Bago City are now enjoying the benefits of electricity after the PNOC Energy Development Corporation (PNOC-EDC) hooked them up to the grid.

The newly hooked households are located in Barangay Bacong Montilla and in Sitios Pataan, Abaca and Durar-og of Barangay Mailum.

Aside from these areas in Bago, PNOC-EDC already provided electricity to 17 barangays and sitios in the municipalities of Calatrava, Escalante, Sagay, Murcia, Silay, Bago and San Carlos.

The geothermal firm started energizing remote areas in Negros Occidental - the host province of its 40-MW geothermal project last year.

The program aims to hook 47 more barangays and sitios in the province to the grid starting next year until 2006.

"PNOC-EDC believes that electricity being a basic element of progress should be provided to all. That is why we immediately responded to the Department of Energy's (DOE) call for support for the rural electrification project," PNOC-EDC general manager Marcelino Tongco said during the switch-on ceremonies held Saturday in Barangay Bacong Montilla.

As a strategy to list track the electrification program, the DOE encouraged Independent Power Producers to help energize communities hosting energy facilities.

PNOC-EDC is building a 40-MW geothermal power plant in Barangay Mailum, Bago City.

Presently, the province of Negros Occidental imports all of its power requirements from Negros Oriental. To be commissioned in 2005, the Northern Negros Geothermal Project (NNGP) is expected to help address the projected power shortage in the Visayas region as it will provide power to the entire province of Negros Occidental and Panay Island.

The country's premier geothermal firm piloted the participation of Independent Power Producers (IPPs) in rural electrification in 1998 in 10 barangays in Ormoc, Leyte.

Today, PNOC-EDC is credited for lighting up lives and homes in 506 barangays in Leyte, Samar, Negros Oriental and Occidental, Albay, Sorsogon, and Cotabato.

It has pledged to remain an active partner in the rural electrification program by energizing 827 more barangays from 2004 to 2006 in the provinces hosting its geothermal projects including Negros Occidental.

"We at PNOC-EDC recognize our responsibility to the society not just by operating according to environmental and societal standards but by contributing to economic prosperity. By energizing these communities, we hope to bring them closer to the mainstream of development," Tongco added.

10/11/2003

Bron : Sun Star Bacolod

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