Ifugao region inks hydro power agreement


A 140 MW hydro power plant will soon stand in the province of Ifugao.

Elders and leaders of Lamut, Mayaoyao, Lagawe, and Aguinaldo sealed the framework agreement for the proposed 140 MW Alimit Hydro Electric Power Project (HEPP) of SN Aboitiz Power Ifugao.

Ifugao Governor Pedro Maym-o approved of the project saying it will help the economy while preserving the province’s environment.

“We have nothing to lose but many things to gain. The province will benefit in terms of employment, taxes and utilization of God-given natural resources,” Mayam-o told Sun Star.

Ifugao’s rich natural resources should be utilized in a way it will benefit the locals and quash fears of losing water for irrigation, Mayam-o added.

SN Aboitiz Power (Snap) Vice President and Alimit Project Director Kjell Valdal said it took them four years to get the approval of 81 barangays and partner with four Indigenous Peoples Organizations.

The framework agreement sets the standards for the relationship of the stakeholders of the towns with SNAP Ifugao, as well as guidelines to fortify cooperation, collaboration, and partnership in the next years.

The power plant project has two components, namely the main hydroelectric power plant (120 MW) and a diversion power plant (20 MW).

The hydro power project aims to build an impounding reservoir by drawing water from Alimit and Ibulao rivers tributary to the Magat river between Lagawem Aguinaldo and Mayaoyao towns. The reservoir will be supplemented by water to be diverted from the Ibulao river going to the Alimit river, giving SNAP 140 MW capacity in the area.

The originally proposed plan had a generating capacity of 390 MW through a third component, a 250 MW pumped storage which was put on hold due to market constraints.

Meanwhile, only the municipality of Lamut has yet to sign the framework agreement. It is hoped to sign an agreement in next three weeks.

Mayam-o said the project will not affect the irrigation in four towns and appreciated SNAP Ifugao’s efforts to follow all provisions and laws as well as the community’s beliefs and traditions.

During the signing, SNAP Vice President and Chief Corporate Officer Mike Hosillos was present, as well as SNAP President and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Yu, Mayors Gaspar Chillagan Jr. of Aguinaldo of Lagawe, Martin Habawel Jr. of Lagawe, and Ronnie Lumayna of Mayaoyao, with the town’s respective IPO.