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NGCP, DENR sign accord to preserve national park

MANILA, March 29 — The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) will sign an with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to preserve the Northern Luzon Heroes Hill National Park — a protected area in Santa, Ilocos Sur to be traversed by NGCP’s new transmission line project.

NGCP spokesperson Atty. Cynthia Alabanza said the country’s electric transmission system operator will construct a new 230-kilovolt (kV) line from San Esteban, Ilocos Sur to Laoag, Ilocos Norte.

The double-circuit line will transmit the electricity generated from the wind power plants in Ilocos Sur to the rest of the region.

“The transmission line will also be in compliance with the N-1 contingency of NGCP which ensures the transmission system will still operate at a normal level despite the loss or malfunction of one of its major component,” Alabanza said.

In constructing the San Esteban–Laoag 230 kV line, six towers traversing a distance of more than two kilometers will be built inside the national park.

NGCP has committed to fund a three-year reforestation program to compensate for the trees that will be cut for the construction of the transmission line. One hundred trees will be planted for every tree cut.

“NGCP is committed to its advocacy of taking care of the environment. In fact, we already entered into an agreement like this with DENR for our Colon-Cebu transmission project to preserve the Central Cebu Protected Landscape in the Visayas,” the spokesperson said.

She added: “It is a must for NGCP to comply with environmental laws and DENR’s guidelines before we push through with our projects."

The Northern Luzon Heroes Hill National Park is a 1,300-hectare park in Ilocos Sur which features a Molave Forest and a 25-foot pristine waterfall, and is a famous spot for local and tourist mountaineers and trekkers.

NGCP is a privately owned corporation in charge of operating, maintaining, and developing the country’s power grid. NGCP transmits high-voltage electricity through “power superhighways” that include the interconnected system of transmission lines and towers, substations and related assets. (PNA)

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