Environmental Performance Report and Management Plan for the FGen Tagoloan Hydropower Project

An Environmental Performance Report and Management Plan (EPRMP) was prepared for the amendment of the Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) of the Tagoloan Hydropower Project (Tagoloan HPP). The EPRMP was essential to the project because of FGen Tagoloan Hydro Corporation’s (FGen) plant to increase their production capacity and change the location of their main project components. The proposed 33-39MW Tagoloan HPP is located in Impasug-ong, Bukidnon will utilize the Tagoloan River The project is in line with the endeavor of the Department of Energy (DOE) to develop a diversified mix of renewable energy resources. The project is expected to address Mindanao’s need for additional energy by 2025.

The proponent for the project, the FGen Tagoloan Hydro Corporation is a subsidiary of the First Gen, created specifically for the Tagoloan Hydropower Project. In addition, the First Gen is considered the leading company in the Philippines in the field of clean and renewable energy and composing 16% of the total installed capacity in the country or 2,959MW. 

Aperçu Consultants Inc. conducted the following activities to prepare for the EPRMP:

Land Module

Land Use, Geology, and Pedology

Data from the municipal Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) of Impasug-ong was used to determine the land use of the area with relation to the location of the Tagoloan HPP. Information on the slopes and soil types was also collected. The geology of the project area was assessed and potential hazards and hazard-prone areas were identified.

Terrestrial Ecology

The flora assessment of the project site was taken from the Ecological Study and Sustainability Plan (ESSP) of the GHD of the Tagoloan HPP which was conducted through the commission of the FGen Tagoloan. The results of the ESSP were considered in the formulation of the EPRMP. The ESSP assessed the ecological parameters (i.e., density, frequency, dominance, plant diversity, and evenness indices) using the Magurran 1988 formulae, and the vegetation description of the area which includes the taxa richness, biodiversity indices, ecologically important species, and invasive species. This has helped in the development of mitigating and monitoring measures in terms of the possible impacts the project activities may cause to the identified species.

A faunal assessment of avian, mammalian, amphibians, and reptiles in the site were assessed during the dry season. The presence, distribution, and endemicity/conservation status were also identified to provide an assessment of the impact of the project to the identified species which were the basis in the development of mitigating measures and monitoring plans. 

Water Module

Hydrology/Hydrogeology

The hydrology which includes the hydrologic catchment, climate, rainfall, evaporation, streamflow, hydrological modelling was discussed and assessed. The hydrological modelling involved the streamflow and minimum ecological flow of the Tagaloan River which were used in determining the flow scenarios that are to occur to the river. 

Water Quality

Water samples were collected from the project site to be used for the baseline data for water quality to which the impacts of the project will be determined from. The potential impacts based on the results of the parameters for water quality were considered and given mitigation and management measures.

Air Module

Meteorology

The existing meteorological conditions at the project site were collected and assessed to identify which factors may impact the project area.

Ambient Air Quality

The existing ambient air quality in the project area was measured as a baseline to be compared to the ambient air quality standards during the construction and operation phases of the project. Sources of air emissions and existing air pollutant levels were determined.

Ambient Noise

The existing ambient noise levels in the vicinity of the proposed project site were measured and the potential noise impacts during the construction and operation of the plant were determined and compared to criteria values.

People Module

The baseline socio-economic conditions of the municipality were described and Information, Education, and Communication (IEC) programs were conducted to make the community aware of the proposed project. A Social Assessment Study (SAS) was also conducted to establish the economic, political, and cultural significance of the project.

Environmental Risk Assessment (ERA)

Risks during the construction and operation of the project were identified and evaluated. Assessment studies were conducted to understand these risks and develop suitable mitigation strategies, management and emergency response plans.

The Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) for the project was issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region X on 01 October 2012 with ECC Reference No. ECC-R10-1209-0178. The ECC is available at the following link.

Cumulative Impact Assessment (CIA) 2015-2018 of the First Gen Clean Energy Complex in Barangay Sta, Rita Aplaya, Sta. Rita Karsada, and Bobok, Batangas City

The First Gen Clean Energy Complex (FGCEC) is an industrial zone located in Batangas City that houses four (4) operating Power Plant Projects of the First Gen Corporation (FGen). The main fuel of the power plants is the natural gas from the Malampaya Gas Field located in the offshore Northwest Palawan. The four (4) Power Plant Projects along with their respective Environmental Compliance Certificates (ECC) and date of issuance are indicated in the table below:

Project NameECC Reference No./date of issuance
1063MW Gas-Fired Combined Cycle Power Plant Project (Santa Rita Power Plant)EMB CO – 9602-004-207/ May 20, 1997
San Lorenzo Nominal 500 MW Combined Cycle Power Plant Project (San Lorenzo Power Plant)EMB CO – 9904-006-202/ September 8, 1999
San Gabriel Combined Cycle Power Plant Project (San Gabriel Power Plant)EMB CO – 0506-006-202/ December 19, 2005
San Gabriel Avion 115 MW Power Plant Project (Avion Power Plant)ECC-CO-1308-0025/ December 9, 2013

As part of the requirements stipulated in the respective ECCs of the power plants, a Cumulative Impact Assessment (CIA) was conducted by the Aperçu Consultants, Inc. The CIA was also conducted to assist in the promotion of sustainable development, to conform to good industry practice, and to aid the Proponents in the decision-making process. In addition, the CIA was also conducted to address the cumulative effect of the generated air emissions and water discharges to the air and water quality within the impact area of the industries considered, to identify the significance and the magnitude of the cumulative impact observed, and to recommend mitigating measures and/or monitoring activities based on the developed assessment.

The CIA made by Aperçu Consultants, Inc. consists of the following:

Introduction

The section includes the rationale, objectives of the study, and the scope and limitations of the project. The section provides a brief understanding of the project and the importance of the CIA.

CIA Framework

The section presents the steps formulated for the formulation of the CIA. It includes a detailed description of each step and its rationale and objectives. The section provides an overview of the expected topics to be addressed by the report.

Assessment Results

The section is the main highlight of the CIA report. It contains the assessment results on identified Valued Environmental and Social Components (VEC) using the cause-and-effect relationship between stressors and receptors during the time of the study. It consists of but is not limited to the water quality of identified water bodies, groundwater quality, identified aquatic species, mangrove communities, and the avifauna and air quality of the identified airshed. These results were the basis in the prediction of the future condition of the identified VECs.

VECs Predicted Future Conditions

The section discusses the prediction of the future conditions of the VECs, which helped to identify any possible effects the project may have on the identified VECs and through the consideration of possible future scenarios.

Management of Cumulative Impacts

The section recommends various mitigating strategies of the identified cumulative impacts. This section assists the Proponent in decision-making for the improvement of their project and lessen its impacts on the identified VECs.

Conclusion

This section discusses the conclusion of the study, which provides a summary of the assessment generated from the study and the overall cumulative impacts of the project to the ecological condition of its surrounding area.