Bacolod: Negros Occ. SP issues RONO for LNG plant


Bacolod City – The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Negros Occidental has issued a RONO (Resolution of No Objection) to the Reliance Energy Development Inc. (REDI), a subsidiary of the San Miguel Corporation, which is constructing a Liquified Natural Gas plant in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental.

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A resolution granting RONO to SMC-REDI was approved by the Negros Occidental SP during its regular session on June 14, disclosed Board Member Manuel Frederick Ko recently.

Ko said that RONO is a requirement for SMC-REDI to secure an Environment Compliance Certificate from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and proceed with the construction of the LNG plant.

The LNG which will be the fuel for the power plant operation is imported from other countries, he added.

Ko, chair the SP committee on Energy, disclosed that the concern is more on the water-cooling system of the proposed LNG plant, whether it will have an effect on cargo ships carrying LNG, that will be docking at their port.

There will be no destruction of the seascape, nor installation of pipes, except for the construction of their port, he added.

Environmentalist groups have opposed the proposed construction of LNG plant in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental.

The Power for People Coalition (P4P) and Protect VIP raised concerns over the ecological impacts of SMC’s proposed gas fleet, noting that its project sites are areas host to critical marine and coastal ecosystems. This includes Tanon Strait between Cebu and Negros and the Verde Island Passage in Batangas, a marine corridor known as the ‘Center of the Center’ of marine shore fish biodiversity in the world.

Dubbed as a ‘clean’ alternative to coal, fossil gas and its super cooled form LNG is being touted as a ‘transition’ fuel amidst calls for a renewable energy shift in recent years due to global climate targets. While less carbon-intensive than coal, fossil gas and LNG emit methane throughout its value chain, a greenhouse gas with 80 times more heat-trapping capacity than CO2, according to environmentalist groups.

“Fossil gas technologies would operate for a minimum number of 25-35 years, effectively stalling the actual development of genuine renewable energy infrastructures in Negros Occidental and other islands, taking the Philippines on a detour away from a real clean energy transition amidst worsening climate impacts,” Bianca Montilla from Youth for Climate Hope (Y4CH) in Negros Occidental, said in a statement. (Gilbert Bayoran via The Visayan Daily Star (TVDS), photo courtesy of TVDS)


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