By James A. Loyola
Integrated energy company Semirara Mining and Power Corporation (SMPC) invested P2.8 billion on the rehabilitation and life extension program of its two power plants under power generation subsidiary Sem-Calaca Power Corporation (SCPC).
Another P2.2 billion worth of contracts related to the program was also recently awarded to various local and foreign suppliers.
The three-year program ending 2019 has an allotted budget of about P8 billion. It aims to boost the generation capacity of both plants to 600MW and extend its economic life by around 20 to 25 years.
“Units 1 and 2 have been running for 33 years and 21 years, respectively. We are upgrading the equipment to get the reliability, performance, and efficiency needed to support our continuing commercial requirements,” said SMPC President and COO Victor A. Consunji.
Initial equipment upgrades such as boiler modifications beginning late 2016 have already increased the generation capacity of Unit 1 from 220MW to 270MW.
Meanwhile, Unit 2 is scheduled for boiler refurbishing and electric precipitator (EP) expansion from December 2017 to March, 2018.
The EP, a filtration device that can remove 99 percent of hazardous air pollutants, uses static electricity to filter soot and ash from exhaust fumes before exiting smokestacks.
By 2019, a new generator and turbine will also be installed to prolong the plants’ economic viability.
SMPC is the only power producer in the country that owns and mines its own fuel source, allowing it to generate affordable baseload power for the Luzon and Visayas grids.