Philippines - Electricity Generation

A new law provides fiscal and non-fiscal incentives to promote and accelerate the exploration, development and utilization of renewable energy resources which include geothermal energy. As a consequence, 43 Geothermal Service/Operating Contracts has been awarded, expecting an additional capacity of 20 MWe at Maibarara and 30 MWe at Nasulo projects to be commissioned by 2014. Likewise, expansion and optimization projects are in the pipeline. With the current installed capacity of 1,870 MWe geothermal contributes to 14% of the total electricity requirements, from 7 productive poles (Bacon-Manito/Sorsogon/Albay 131 MWe, Mak-Ban/Laguna 458 MWe, Mindanao/Mount Apo 108 MWe, Palinpinon/Negros Oriental 192 MWe, Tiwi/Albay 234 MWe, Maibarara 20 MWe and Tongonan/Leyte 726 MWe (Fronda, et al., 2015).

Development since WGC2010: no major projects, decommissioning of Northern Negros (50 MW), commissioning 20 MWe at Maibarara in 2014.

Installed capacity 1,870 MWe                 
Geothermal Electricity 9,646 GWh/y

Source:  Ruggero Bertani, Geothermal Power Generation in the World 2010-2014 Update Report

Installed geothermal generating capacity (December 2009) in MW 

South NegrosPalinpinon192
MindanaoMt. Apo103
Northern NegrosNegros Occidental49
Total 1904

The Philippines is the world’s second largest producer of geothermal energy for power generation, with an installed capacity of 1.9 GW for a running capacity of about 1.8 GW, accounting for 12% of the nation’s total electric power supply. The relatively high availability of the geothermal plants resulted in the delivery of about 10 TWh of generation, 17% of the nation’s electricity production.

There was a minor increase since 2005, with the 49 MW at Northern Negros plant (it will operate with electricity supply contracts between Energy Development Corporation - EDC and electricity cooperatives and distributors) commissioned in 2007, and an upgrading and rehabilitation of Mak-Ban, for 25 MW, with an increase of 2%.

The decrease of installed capacity is mainly due to the decommissioning of 110 MW units in Tiwi.

The most important event in the period was the expiration of several BOT contract, with the transfer of ownership of the plants to EDC (from Cal Energy, Ormat and Marubeni in Leyte and Mindanao).

As an additional important change, the state PNOC/EDC has been privatized and now as EDC is operating steamfields and power plant in the country. The geothermal business is 100% private, owned by a company (Red Vulcan) of the local FirstGen group. The Government plans to double the current installed capacity from renewable energy in the next decade and the geothermal sector will undoubtedly benefit. The geothermal area are listed below.

Bac-Man (Bacon-Manito, Sorsogon/Albay): exploitation started in 1993-1998 (EDC and National Power Corporation - NPC), a small 1.5 MW back pressure turbine plant (combined with drying plant), two units for 55 MW and two for 20 MW, for a total of 152 MW.

Leyte (Tongonan): five flash (661.5 MW), and 3 topping cycle (back pressure turbines), 1 bottoming (flash), and 1 bottom cycle binary plants, with a total capacity of 61 MW, for the optimization of the overall energy recovery from the geothermal system, reaching the installed capacity of 716 MW. The entire plants have been transferred to EDC from CalEnergy and Ormat at the end of the BOT period.

Mindanao (Mount Apo, North Cotabato/Davao): two flash units (one single and one dual pressure) for 103 MW in total have been transferred to EDC from Marubeni in 2009. A new unit is planned.

Northern Negros (Negros Occidental): EDC commissioned in 2007 one flash (dual pressure) unit of 49 MW; it is operated by NPC as "merchant plant", selling electricity to the local consumers through the new electricity environment. It will provide stability in the supply of power in Negros Island. In terms of power generation mix, Negros Island is now utilizing 100% renewable energy with geothermal providing 99.6% while the remaining 0.4% comes from hydro.

South Negros (Palinpinon, Negros Oriental): five flash units for 192.5 MW are in stable operation since 1982; an optimization project for 20 MW binary is under development by EDC/NPC.

Mak-Ban (Mount Makiling-Banahaw, Laguna/Quezon): it is under strong development by Chevron, with four units rehabilitated in 2005, despite its starting of operation in 1979: ten flash units and a 15.7 binary plant, for a total of 458 MW; there are 72 production and 16 reinjection wells; the average production is 6 MW/well.

Tiwi (Albay): also this field started its operative life in 1979. Today there are four operative flash units (on a total of six) for 234 MW, rehabilitated in 2005. The field is exploited through 38 production and 21 reinjection wells, with 5.5 MW/well. It is operated by Chevron.

The electricity production from geothermal resources shows a first period of stable generation, and an important step up around year 2000, jumping above the 10 TWh threshold.  

Taken from Ruggero Bertani’s paper, " Geothermal Power Generation in the World 2005–2010 Update Report ", published in Proceedings of the World Geothermal Congress 2010, Bali, Indonesia, 25-29 April 2010.