Conglomerate Ayala remained keen on pursuing the P1.3 billion 8-megawatt Cantakoy mini-hydropower project in Bohol despite the opposition lodged by its local government due to concerns about safety and the environment.
Eric T Francia, managing director and group head for corporate strategy and development of Ayala, said that although the project remains in the pipeline, it is currently on hold until the joint venture implementing the project is able to address all the issues raised against the project.
“We are in discussions with some stakeholders in Bohol at the provincial board level about the concerns that they raised. I don’t think it is accurate to generalize this as ‘staunch opposition by Bohol residents.’ That said, we are cognizant of the board members’ concerns and are in dialogue with them to mutually find ways to address any outstanding issue and progress with the project,” Francia explained.
“It is a good renewable energy project and will benefit the people of Bohol,” he further stressed.
The proposed mini-hydropower project is being undertaken by Quadriver Energy, a joint venture company of the Ayala-led AC Energy, which holds a 70-percent stake, and Sta Clara Power, which owns the remaining 30 percent.
According to previous reports, the mayor of the coastal town of Inabanga, Bohol, sought the cancellation of the environmental compliance certificate (ECC) awarded to the Cantakoy power project.
Mayor Jose Jumamoy was quoted in reports as saying that the local government opposed the project due to the “clear, present danger” that the Cantakoy plant would pose to “our people’s well-being and right to healthy environment,” which he stressed should not be sacrificed.
The Cantakoy power project is one of a handful of mini-hydropower ventures that Ayala intends to undertake with Sta Clara Power, which holds several service contracts for hydropower projects. The partnership will involve at least 100 MW worth of capacity, Francia earlier said.
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