Power Portal

POWER PORTAL Karen Calseña, staff of the Mindanao Development Authority (front, extreme left) provides updates on the One Stop
Facilitation and Monitoring Center (OSFMC) web portal and navigates with the personnel of the Environment Management Bureau of the
Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Region 10 the system's online functions. The portal will help track the renewable
energy project applications though a monitoring system that includes real-time status updates for partner government agencies and
project stakeholders.

In a bid to push for cleaner and greener energy sources in Mindanao, key regional government agencies involved in the permitting process of renewable energy (RE) projects have expressed commitment to accelerate processing and updating of RE project applications in the regions.

This commitment was obtained during a recent regional rounds made by the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) to provide operational updates on the implementation of the One Stop Facilitation and Monitoring Center (OSFMC), a web-based portal for tracking RE applications in Mindanao.

Desktop computer sets with built-in software that will allow for effective monitoring of all pending RE project applications in Mindanao were turned over to the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources-Environment Management Bureau (DENR-EMB) Regions X and XII, and the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) Regions IX, X and XII in simple ceremonies from July 14 to 23 at their respective offices.

"Through these computer units provided by the USAID B-LEADERS Project for this initial batch of regional agencies, there would be a dedicated facility with access to the OSFMC web portal that consolidates the data of all RE applications in Mindanao," said Romeo Montenegro, director of the investment promotions and public affairs office of MinDA.

Launched in October last year, the OSFMC web portal was designed to effectively monitor and update the status as well as facilitate the speedy processing of the pending RE project applications in Mindanao. As part of the government response to the 2012 Mindanao Power Summit recommendations, the portal was established through MinDA in partnership with the Department of Energy (DOE) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)'s B-LEADERS or Building Low Emission Alternatives to Develop Economic Resilience and Sustainability Project.

"OSFMC's web portal will help track the RE project applications though a monitoring system that includes real-time status updates for partner government agencies and project stakeholders," explained Montenegro.

Created through the Mindanao Power Monitoring Committee (MPMC), the OSFMC was a mechanism established to speed up the approval of application permits for RE power projects in Mindanao. Its operations hub was opened to public in May this year and is currently housed at the MinDA office.

Last year, MinDA, DOE, DENR, NCIP, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Agrarian Reform and the National Water Resources Board entered into an agreement for the implementation of the OSFMC.

The MPCMC on the other hand was created in July 2012 through Executive Order 81, as a committee tasked to coordinate the efforts of the national, regional, and local governments and power industry stakeholders to improve Mindanao's power industry.

MinDA and DOE co-chair the MPMC composed of the Energy Regulatory Commission, the National Electrification Adminstration, the National Power Corporation, the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation, the Mindanao Electric Power Alliance, the Association of Mindanao Rural Electric Cooperatives, National Transmission Corporation and the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP).

Currently, there are 290 pending RE power project applications in Mindanao with a potential combined capacity of 2,998.09 megawatts (MW). Out of the total power project applications are 242 hydropower projects with a combined potential capacity of 2,147.71 MW. Also in the pipeline are 28 solar energy projects with a combined potential capacity of 427.25 MW; 12 biomass energy power projects with a combined potential capacity of 144.65 MW; and eight geothermal energy power projects with a combined potential capacity of 278.48 MW.

"Once these projects are completed and start generating power, we can expect a more diversified and balanced energy mix in Mindanao in the coming years," Montenegro said.

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