November 30, 2020 at 08:00 pm
Alena Mae S. Flores
Batangas Clean Energy Inc., a company led by US investors and airline and tobacco tycoon Lucio Tan, is moving forward with a P82.5-billion investment in a liquefied natural gas terminal and 1,200-megawatt combined cycle gas turbine plant project in Batangas province.
The project was recently certified by the Department of Energy as an energy project of national significance that will play a critical role in meeting the growing demand for power, developing a replacement source of natural gas in preparation for the depletion of the Malampaya gas field and ensuring national energy security.
The project will also help reduce the country’s carbon footprint by diversifying the generation mix away from coal and diesel-fired generation and provide flexible generation to the grid.
“Overall, BCE’s goal is to develop, construct and operate a world-class LNG import terminal and CCGT power plant that will position Batangas City as the LNG hub of the Philippines and contribute to the economic and social development of Batangas province and the country,” BCE said in documents filed with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
BCE, led by Gen X Energy LLC and LCT Energy & Resources Inc. of Tan and his immediate family, proposed to develop an integrated LNG import terminal and power plant in Barangays Pinamucan Ibaba and Pinamucan Proper in Batangas City.
Gen X is a Blackstone portfolio company with the sole objective of making investments in energy projects in Asia. Blackstone is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is one of the world’s leading private equity funds with a proven track record of making investments in the energy sector.
The project will be located at the Himmel industrial complex and will an LNG unloading/reloading jetty, LNG storage tank, regasification facilities and the power plant.
The project is in the pre-construction stage, which involves environment impact assessment process, engineering and design and field surveys and technical studies.
“The project is expected to achieve financial close and start construction in July 2021. The construction period is expected to last 48 months and will include site preparation, plant construction and commissioning,” the company said in the report.
The project is expected to begin commercial operations by July 2025 and will be operational for 50 years or longer.
BCE said earlier the power plant would use the natural gas from the LNG terminal as fuel. Electricity from the CCGT power plant will be delivered, via a double-circuit high voltage transmission line to the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines’ 500kV transmission system.
It aims to replace the source of natural gas in preparation for the depletion of the Malampaya gas field. This is expected to develop a downstream natural gas industry in the Philippines and contribute to the economic development of Batangas.