LGUs in Albay, Sorsogon receive P29.1M from BacMan operator
By Sally A. Altea
Communities and local government units (LGUs) hosting the Bacon-Manito (BacMan) geothermal power plant in Albay and Sorsogon received more than P29.1 million financial benefits for programs on Covid-19, development, livelihood, and environment protection.
Of the P29.1 million recently turned over by the Energy Development Corporation (EDC), P7.74 million will be used for the Covid-19 plans and projects of the LGUs to help in their current battle against the pandemic The remaining P10.68 million will be allocated for the Development and Livelihood Fund (DLF) and the other P10.68 million for reforestation, watershed management, and environment enhancement fund.
Based on the Department of Energy Act of 1992 and Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (EPIRA), power generation companies are mandated to turn over P0.01 per kilowatt-hour of their total electricity sales as a financial benefit to the host communities.
Of the total amount, 50 percent of the one centavo is for the electrification fund of the concerned distribution utilities; 25 percent for development and livelihood fund and the remaining 25 percent for reforestation, watershed management, health, and/or enhancement fund of the host LGUs.
“We believe that the benefits we bring to the community is our responsibility and is part of our commitment to our revitalized mission of forging collaborative pathways for a regenerative and decarbonized future,” Barcena said.
In April 2020, the DOE issued a circular allowing the use of Energy Regulation 1-94, program funds for Covid-19 intervention programs of host communities to energy generation firms.
Following these guidelines, EDC has downloaded P10.16 million and P18.19 million to the LGUs of Albay and Sorsogon respectively, including its municipalities, cities and barangays that host EDC’s Bacon-Manito geothermal plant.
On top of its regular compliance with the ER 1-94 program, EDC has been extending its support to its host communities through skills development training for possible employment, educational assistance, environment protection, and enterprise development.
To date, 59 Albayanos are undergoing EDC’s skills training program in partnership with Keitech Foundation, Inc., Manito LGU and First Balfour.
EDC is the largest pure renewable energy company in the Philippines, operating a total of 1,480 MW geothermal, wind, hydroelectric power, and solar power plants in various parts of the country, including the Bicol region. (PIA5/Albay)