A waste-to-energy project by a unit of Metro Pacific Investment Corp. (MPIC) with Dole Philippines, Inc. received the first tranche of subsidy, which is up to 50% of its qualified capital cost, from the Japanese government.
In a statement on Monday, the conglomerate said the biogas project of METPower Venture Partners Holdings, Inc. in South Cotabato was recognized as a joint crediting mechanism (JCM) model project by Japan’s Ministry of the Environment, a first of its kind in the country, which is expected to meet both countries’ greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction targets.
In November 2018, the two companies entered into a deal to put up two biogas facilities for Dole Philippines’ canneries which would process organic fruit waste and harness biogas to produce 5.7 megawatt-equivalent of clean renewable energy.
The facilities are said to reduce GHG emissions by approximately 50,000 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent per year from fossil fuel substitutes.
“With this JCM Model Project recognition, we have further validation of the considerable environmental benefit our biogas plants bring in curbing the greenhouse effect and capturing methane emissions for alternative fuel use,” METPower Chief Executive Officer Karim C. Garcia said.
Japan through the project is promoting advanced low-carbon technologies, systems, and infrastructures meant to reduce GHG emissions. It implements the program under bilateral cooperation with partner countries.
METPower expects further cash distributions from Japan’s Environment Ministry to arrive in 2021.
The MPIC unit’s construction of the biogas facilities was affected by delays caused by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. It expects the facilities to start running in the first half of 2021.
Further, the company is also developing new projects, such as a carbon dioxide recovery and organic fertilizer distribution facility.
MPIC is one of the three Philippine units of Hong Kong-based First Pacific Co. Ltd., the others being Philex Mining Corp. and PLDT Inc.
Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Adam J. Ang