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PIA Press Release

SITMO turns over P1.2M micro hydro project to MAGSECO

by Jina Shirley G. Dacmay

HUNGDUAN, Ifugao (23 October) -- The far flung barangays of Maggok and Bangbang here were finally lighted with the Save the Ifugao Terraces Movement (SITMO) turning over of a 1.2M Micro Hydro Project (MHP) to the Maggok Sustainable Electric Cooperative (MAGSECO) in August this year.

According to Maggok Barangay Chairman Benjamin Nahpadan, the power plant project is now providing energy to 15 households in ten sitios of the two barangays.

Nahpadan said the 15 households who are currently energized by the project will save as much as P150 to P450 per month for lighting expenses. A household usually consumes three to nine liters of kerosene at P50 per liter each month.

Aside from using light for evening study of students and preparation of lesson plans for teachers, the residents can now use household appliances and other electric gadgets.

The installation of electricity has also brought life to small business entrepreneurs like the two village stores.

Nahpadan said the project was made possible through counterpart sharing by the provincial government, the local government unit of Hungduan and the barangays of Maggok and Bangbang and cash award from the ASHDEN International Award from London , United Kingdom for sustainable energy.

He disclosed that the project was started by the Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement in 2000 and was taken over by SITMO when the PRRM folded up.

SITMOís model sustainable energy development program for the area which is benign, with low impact on environment , sensitive to the local people and one that directly benefit them won for it a 10,000 pounds cash award from ASHDEN International which was used in completing the micro-hydro power plant project.

Ester Lichnachan, team leader of the MHP said provision of electricity in poor areas remains difficult and the SITMOís energy development program is most welcome. The project also aims to increase access of rural Ifugao people to basic energy services for their lifeís needs like provision of some semblance of modernization to keep the youth from out migrating and to help decrease poverty, she added.

In a report obtained from the Office of SITMO, it states that the financial award has boosted the status of the organization not only in the realm of renewable energy generation but also in other aspects of development work like environmental, livelihood activities, culture among others. (PIA-Ifugao) [top]

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