Therma Marine defers maintenance shutdown

By CARMELITO Q. FRANCISCO, Correspondent

DAVAO CITY — Power barge operator Therma Marine, Inc. will postpone its maintenance work until one of the 105-megawatt (MW) plants of Steag State Power, Inc. goes online to provide more power to the Mindanao grid.

Steag earlier announced that one of the plants will resume operations by first week of next month, while the other plant will be back online a month later.

In a press statement on Monday, Jose Venancio P. Batiquin, chief operating officer of the Aboitiz Power Corp. subsidiary, said under normal operations, the scheduled maintenance of Therma Marine’s two power barges is slated for June.

“We are ensuring our customers we have enough fuel supply to meet the power supply requirements of our customers especially this summer,” said Mr. Batiquin as he promised that Therma Marine will “respond to our customers when they are in need of additional power supply.”

At present, 22 electric cooperatives and distribution utilities have bought power from Therma Marine, which operates barges moored in Maco, Compostela Valley and Nasipit, Agusan del Norte.

The barges have a combined capacity of about 200 MW, about 10 MW less than the capacity of the two plants of Steag, which shut down on Feb. 27 resulting in a grid-wide blackout.

The Mindanao grid collapsed when one of the Steag plants reduced its power and when the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines failed to draw power from the Agus 1 hydroelectric plant.

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