AboitizPower backs PH grid with battery

Amidst the increasing demand for a reliable supply of electricity in the country, AboitizPower is adding to its portfolio battery energy storage system (BESS) projects that will help ensure grid stability through sufficient ancillary services.

BESS is a type of energy storage system that is capable of storing energy electrochemically. It can be connected to the grid, small grid, distribution system, or end-user facility to deliver the energy demand when needed.

“Our foray into battery technology is a key component of our 10-year growth strategy, which ultimately aims to address the energy trilemma of energy security, energy equity, and environmental sustainability,” AboitizPower President and Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel V. Rubio said.

The company, in partnership with Wartsila and Aboitiz Construction, recently started the installation of its first BESS project in its Therma Marine, Inc. (TMI) facility with a capacity of 49 megawatts (MW) in Maco, Davao de Oro. This will fortify TMI’s capability to support the Mindanao grid, especially during the summer months when there is a limited supply of energy generated by hydropower plants due to lower water levels.

TMI BESS is the first of its kind in the Philippines in terms of the hybrid concept, putting together two complementing technologies to ensure a fast and sustained energy delivery. This is one of the 12 projects with a total capacity of 248 MW for regulating and contingency reserves that AboitizPower is targeting to develop in the next 10 years. It will serve as AboitizPower’s model for its future battery investments, as well as hybrid renewable energy projects.

“The battery technology presents a great opportunity for AboitizPower to address concerns on the reliability, affordability, and sustainability of energy supply. By ensuring the stability of our grid, we are responding to the needs of our customers and communities, as well as supporting economic growth,” Rubio added.

The Department of Energy (DOE), as shared in the 2021-2040 Transmission Development Plan of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP), projected that the system peak demand will reach 53,679 MW by 2040. With this forecasted demand growth, it is necessary to ensure the grid’s stability to provide consumers with a reliable supply of electricity.

One of the requirements for maintaining grid stability is Ancillary Services. In order to maintain the load-generation balance of the system, the grid will require sufficient Ancillary Services. These are support services that are necessary to sustain the transmission capacity and energy that are essential in maintaining the power quality, reliability, and security of the grid.

Adopting the recommendation of the Grid Management Committee (GMC), the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) recognized BESS as a source of Frequency Control Ancillary Services (FCAs). FCAs are necessary to ensure a balance between supply and demand in the power system.

AboitizPower, one of the largest energy companies in the Philippines, is also the largest provider of Ancillary Services in the country, thus well-positioned to support its continued growth moving forward.

In addition to its entry into the battery market, AboitizPower’s growth strategy in the next decade will also be significantly driven by renewable energy.

Currently, AboitizPower, together with its partners, is the largest owner and operator of renewable energy in the Philippines based on installed capacity. It has been leading in the renewable energy space since the 1970s, beginning with hydro then later on expanding to also add geothermal and solar to its Cleanergy portfolio.

In the next 10 years, AboitizPower will further grow its Cleanergy portfolio, both domestically and internationally, in an effort to help build the country’s renewable energy market and contribute to the global renewable energy goals.