NOTE: This story was first published in The Bohol Chronicle’s Sunday print edition.
After years of chronic power shortages, the path towards the establishment of an independent power plant in the province is now off the drawing boards after the Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Electrification Agency (NEA) approved the revised One Bohol Power (1BP) Terms of Reference (TOR) for the procurement of power supply from the winning power supplier.
The 1BP composed of the three distribution utilities (DUs) – Bohol Light Company Inc. (BLCI) and the Bohol Electric Cooperatives I and II made public to interested bidders to submit their Letter of Intent (LOI) to participate and upon submission of the LOI pay a non-refundable bidding document fee of PhP250,000 on or before 5 p.m., September 11, 2020.
COMPETITIVE SELECTION PROCESS
According to Tito O. Andamon, Chairman of the 1BP Joint Competitive Selection Process (JCSP) Third Party Bids and Award Committee (PBAC), the fee shall be paid to the Boheco -1 current account at the Metrobank Branch in Tubigon, Bohol.
Rules of the Competitive Selection Process (CSP) and the methodology for the evaluation of the proposals will be released to bidders who have submitted their LOI’s to participate and have paid the bidding document fees on September 11, 2020
The deadline for the submission of bidding proposals is set on December 18, 2020, at 10:00 AM, according to Andamon.
FIRM BASELOAD SUPPLY
According to the Terms of Reference (TOR) of the bidding, the type of contract is for a “firm” ten-year baseload supply for a contracted capacity in megawatts (MWs) with an initial minimum committed baseload demand of 50 MWs for 2024 to increase up to 83 MWs by 2033.
Baseload is called continuous load and is considered relatively stable and refers to the minimum amount of electrical demand over a 24-hour period.
Meaning, the winning bidder shall deliver to 1BP its initial baseload demand of 50 MWs in 2024 and fulfill its “ladderized” commitment of 83 MWs in 2033.
The minimum generating capacity of the bidder shall be no less than the contracted capacity of 1BP, according to the TOR.
According to 1BP sources, peak power demand for Bohol before the Sars-Cov-2 pandemic reached 97 MWs but dipped to 78 MWs when a 33-day enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) was strictly enforced in the province crippling the local economy and is now experiencing a gasping revival under a modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).
The source of power is ‘open technology” provided that it is compliant with Provincial Ordinance No.2018-005 “Declaring the official policy of the Provincial Government of Bohol dis-allowing the building or establishment of any coal-fired power plant in the Province of Bohol”.
The winning bidder can build a power plant powered by solar, wind, hydro, gas, diesel even nuclear, or a combination of existing sources except for coal.
TEN-YEAR SUPPLY CONTRACT
To ensure zero-outage power supply of the committed capacity of 1BP, replacement power shall be the obligation of the supplier. In case of failure of the supplier to provide replacement power, the 1BP shall be allowed to source the replacement power at the expense of the supplier.
The Power Supply Agreement shall take effect for a period of ten years with commercial operations to start on December 26, 2023 to December 25, 2033 with the scheduled delivery of supply not exceeding thirty-six months after ERC’s final approval of the power supply agreement.
Bohol locally sources its power supply from three hydropower plants in Ewon, Sevilla, Janopol, Balilihan, and Tontonan, Loboc with a total of 20.4 MWs, Bohol Diesel Power Plant (BDPP) – 16.2 MWs and the rest from geothermal plants in Leyte and diesel and coal-fired plants in Cebu through the Leyte-Bohol submarine cable Interconnection project.
The quest for an independent power plant in Bohol was borne out of super-typhoon Yolanda on November 8, 2013 and a 6.5 magnitude earthquake on July 6, 2017, that both laid waste the province of Leyte, our main source of electric power.
Then-Governor, now 1st District Congressman Edgar Chatto issued Executive Order No. 13 series of 2014 creating the Bohol Energy Development Advisory Group (BEDAG) composed of stakeholders from the power sector and sought the assistance of the USAID Advancing Philippine Competitiveness (COMPETE) for technical assistance in formulating a long term Bohol Island Power Development Plan. (Chito M. Visarra)