NIA EYES PPP ON IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT

June 28, 2022, 10:14 AM
 

NIA Central Office – The National Irrigation Administration (NIA), headed by Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya, eyes the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) on irrigation development with 50 potential irrigation projects nationwide.

Irrigation development in the Philippines is very slow at 2% of the potential irrigable area of about 1.3 million hectares annually due to lack of budgetary support to fast-track implementation of big-ticket multi-purpose projects; slow phase of project preparation due to failure of local consultants to deliver necessary outputs like feasibility study and detailed engineering design; and conversion of developed irrigated areas to other land uses like residential, industrial and other purposes.

With involving the Private Sector through Private-Public Partnership (PPP) will accelerate irrigation development by offering other potential benefits from the irrigation projects like hydropower and floating solar power generations.

The P33.75-billion Casecnan Multi-Purpose Irrigation and Power Project (CMIPP) is the first PPP Project implemented by NIA. The project generates electricity through the 150 MW hydropower plant and divert water through a 26.27 km underground tunnel into the Pantabangan reservoir in Nueva Ecija.

CMIPP was successfully undertaken through a Build, Operate, and Transfer (BOT) Agreement between NIA and Cal Energy Casecnan Water and Energy Company, Inc. (CECWEC) on November 13, 1994. CECWEC conducted the Turnover Ceremony of the Casecnan Hydroelectric Power Plant to NIA and PSALM on December 10, 2021.

It involves the construction of a 26.27-kilometer, 6.50-meter diameter transbasin tunnel traversing Caraballo Mountains with a capacity of 80 cubic meter per second (cms) capable of diverting at least 800 million cms of water per year to the Pantabangan Reservoir. It also involves the construction of two diversion weirs in Casecnan and Taan Rivers in Nueva Vizcaya, including 80.46-kilometer access roads that connect to local municipal and provincial road networks. Two generator sets were also installed generating a combined power of 150 MW and a 230kV Switchyard wherein the National Power Corporation’s (NPC) transmission lines were connected. The power produced in the plant is supplied to the Luzon Grid.

The impounded water in the Pantabangan reservoir expands the irrigated area of the Upper Pampanga River Integrated Irrigation System (UPRIIS) with an additional service area of about 20,321 hectares in the provinces of Nueva Ecija, Tarlac and Pangasinan.

The pilot floating solar project at the Magat reservoir in Ramon, Isabela is by SN Aboitiz Power Group (SNAP). It is the first of its kind over a NIA facility in the country and SNAP’s first floating solar project. The NIA and SNAP switched on the 200-kilowatt pilot floating solar project on a 2,500-square meter area over the Magat reservoir on June 27, 2019.

The pilot floating solar project consists of 720 solar panels on a circular installation held in place by four mooring systems. Its design is inspired by the Amazon giant water lily. This underwent a 10-month stress test to ensure that the facility can withstand strong typhoons before expanding to a commercial capacity.

With NIA’s pursuit in developing its dams and reservoirs for renewable energy with the help of the Private Sector, the project generates clean energy while conserving land area that could potentially serve other purposes, particularly for agriculture.

At present, NIA has 50 potential irrigation projects for PPP nationwide. Of which are major or big-ticket multipurpose projects with hydropower component that can have potential floating solar power farm, and Small River Irrigation Projects (SRIPs) or the medium-sized dams with reservoir that can have potential for floating solar power farm and/or mini-hydro power plant.

Some of the potential major multipurpose projects for PPP are the Balog-Balog Multipurpose Project (Hydropower Component) in Tarlac, Ilocos Sur-Ilocos Norte-Abra Irrigation Project in Region I, Panay River Basin Integrated Development Project in Capiz, Ilaguen Multipurpose Irrigation and Power Project in Isabela, and Balintingon Multipurpose Project in Nueva Ecija.

As PPP is seen to be eligible for power generation, irrigation, and climate change mitigation and adaptation infrastructure projects, NIA sees partnership with the Private Sector an opportunity to gain improved efficiency and project implementation processes in delivering services to the public, especially our farmers.

With PPP’s focus on reduced costs, better risk allocation, faster implementation, improved services and possible generation of additional revenue, the NIA Top Management Officials calls on the Private Sector in the much needed investments to Philippine agriculture.

With the PBBM’s top priority concern placed upon on the agriculture sector, NIA strongly pursues collaboration on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) program to boost the Philippine irrigated agriculture.

Casecnan Multi-Purpose Irrigation and Power Project in Nueva Ecija

The 200-kilowatt pilot floating solar project on a 2,500-square meter area over the Magat Reservoir located in Ramon, Isabela is inspired by the Giant Water Lily

 

**For questions and/or clarifications, you may contact:

EDEN VICTORIA C. SELVA
Department Manager A
NIA Public Affairs and Information Staff
E-mail: pais@nia.gov.ph
Landline: (02) 8921-3741 loc. 113

 

NIA eyes greater achievements under Marcos Administration

June 23, 2022, 11:15 AM
 

NIA Central Office – As part of the Philippine Government’s presidential transition process, president-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Romualdez Marcos, Jr. expressed his plans to reprioritize the development of agriculture in the country.

During the Agri 2022 Online Forum, he highlighted the need for a “change of approach” in the agricultural sector. Marcos Budget Priorities include agriculture and food security, climate resiliency, economic recovery, improved healthcare and education, enhanced infrastructure projects, utilization of renewable energy, eco-tourism development, and sustainable development.

With 15 Regional Offices, two Integrated Irrigation Systems Offices, and 64 irrigation management offices (IMOs) nationwide, the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) supports the incoming administration to further develop the country’s agricultural sector. From the priorities of president-elect Marcos, one will note that NIA is already working on these with the irrigation systems being developed. Hence, NIA always remains true to its mandate of providing efficient, reliable, and sustainable irrigation service to the Filipino farmers.

Under the term of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and NIA Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya, the Agency already started working with projects and initiatives relative to these platforms. With the coming of the new administration, NIA expresses its support to the plans and platforms of Marcos Administration as the Agency looks forward to greater achievements in irrigation sector.

For agriculture and food security, NIA supported the “Build, Build, Build” Program as part of the Duterte Administration’s 10-Point Socioeconomic Agenda envisioned to reduce poverty from 21.6% in 2015 to 13-15 percent in 2022 through massive infrastructure platform. NIA started the construction of its big-ticket projects to cover more agricultural areas nationwide, such as P1.029-billion Pasa Small Reservoir Irrigation Project (Isabela), P13.37-billion Balog-Balog Multipurpose Project – Phase II (Tarlac), P11.21-billion Jalaur River Multipurpose Project II (Iloilo), P25.731-billion Ilocos Norte-Ilocos Sur-Abra Irrigation Project, P3.5-billion Lower Agno River Irrigation System Improvement Project (LARISIP), P4.134-billion Bohol Northeast Basin Multipurpose Dam Project, P31.22-billion Kabulnan 2 Multipurpose Irrigation and Power Project, P5.444-billion Malitubog-Maridagao Irrigation Project (North Cotabato), P8.58-billion Tumauini River Multipurpose Project  (Isabela), and P4.372-billion Chico River Pump Irrigation Project (Kalinga). These big-ticket projects have an aggregate cost of P108.59 billion, thus providing a significant contribution in the food self-sufficiency program of the government.

In terms of renewable energy development, NIA has embarked on the development of hydroelectric power and solar-powered irrigation projects to maximize the utilization of existing irrigation facilities nationwide. As of December 31, 2021, NIA already completed the construction of 333 solar-powered irrigation projects amounting to P1,517,533,450.71. These projects which can generate 4,215.33 horsepower (hp) also provide reliable irrigation water supply to 6,482.62 hectares of agricultural land nationwide, benefitting 8,467 farmers and their families. With the soaring price of gasoline and diesel, these solar-powered pump projects farmers can continue to irrigate their lands free from the burden of shouldering high fuel costs.

With its modernization and innovation platforms, NIA utilizes the full potential of its irrigation facilities in agro-tourism, technological advancement, and innovations. Veering away from mere irrigation service, NIA invites interested parties to invest in hydroelectric power projects in 379 identified potential sites nationwide. Five of which are completely operational, thus providing sustainable resources for renewable energy.

Under the term of President Duterte, NIA also started venturing to floating solar power project on its dams and reservoirs as the SN Aboitiz Power Group has constructed a 2,500-square meter floating solar power energy plant in Magat Dam in Isabela which features solar panels fixed to floats on the water surface.  Instead of focusing on land-based solar projects, NIA offers its dams and reservoirs for the water-based project which can achieve the same purpose of increasing power production while saving agricultural lands.

For Climate Change Resiliency, NIA started adopting High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) to replace earth and/or lined canals due to its durability, leak-free joints, resistance to corrosion, and long-term cost-effectiveness. The Agency also utilizes Concrete Canvas (CC) as an innovative technique in canal lining construction which offers a faster and easier alternative to conventional concrete. The Agency also conducts retrofitting design and structures, adopts water-saving technologies like Alternate Wetting and Drying (AWD) Technology, and utilizes Diversified Cropping in irrigation systems.

As part of the Agency’s Re-Fleeting Program, NIA purchased 34 units of light and transport vehicles and 18 units of heavy equipment for CY 2017. For CY 2018, NIA acquired 91 units of light/transport vehicles and 18 units of heavy equipment. Meanwhile, five units of heavy equipment and 91 units of light/transport vehicles were procured in 2019. Recently, NIA acquired 345 units of motor vehicles for use in the monitoring and evaluation of the status of ongoing construction and Operations and Maintenance (O&M) activities nationwide.

To promote comprehensive rural development and equal access to opportunities and sustained productivity, Republic Act No. 10969, otherwise known as the Free Irrigation Service Act (FISA) was signed into law by President Duterte on February 02, 2018. Under the law, all farmers with landholdings of eight hectares and below are exempted from paying the Irrigation Service Fees (ISF) for water derived from National and Communal Irrigation Systems (NISs and CISs). As of December 2021, the Free ISF Program of the Government has a total of 1,033,778 farmers covering 1,189,503.87 hectares of agricultural land nationwide benefit under the law. Congruently, the National Irrigation Master Plan (NIMP) will pave the way on how to fully develop the remaining 1.4 million out of the 3.1 million hectares of potential areas for irrigation. Based on the NIMP, by 2030, about 75% shall have been provided with irrigation facilities.

In the absence of irrigation service fee, NIA provides technical support and financial subsidies to Irrigators Associations (IAs). The Agency offers Operations Subsidy amounting to P150.00/hectare/season based on the List of Irrigated and Planted Area (LIPA). Likewise, Maintenance Subsidy amounting to P2,800.00 is given for every 3.5 kilometers of unlined (earth) canal or 7.0 kilometers of lined canal per maintenance period (every 45 days, maximum of 6 times per year). NIA also conducts trainings, institutional development programs, and capability-building seminars to farmers to equip them with up-to-date knowledge and skills on system management, organization management, financial management, and entrepreneurship, among others.

For the status of irrigation development as of December 2021, NIA recorded 65.28% irrigation development, irrigating 2,042,392.66 hectares of agricultural land nationwide. Under the Duterte Administration for the period of 2016-2021, there has been an increase of 311,264.66 hectares or 7.95% increase in irrigation development. Administrator Visaya stressed a record in history, that the status of irrigation development for CY 2021 is 11.68% higher than the irrigation development status 10 years ago (2011).

According to the United Nations – Water (2021), the Water-Food-Energy Nexus is central to sustainable development. All of these three critical domains are being provided by NIA. Indeed, the Agency has proven its immeasurable role in ensuring water and food security, sustainable agriculture, and energy production in the country.

Now that the Philippines is moving forward to the plans and programs of the next administration, NIA remains hopeful and confident that the succeeding administration would be able to inspire greater Filipinos and intensify the magnitude of the Agency’s achievements in the years to come

The P645-million Benliw Small Reservoir Irrigation Project in the Municipality of Ubay, Bohol was inaugurated on May 27, 2021. It covers 400 hectares of agricultural land in barangays of Benliw, Emelda, Cagting, and Sinandigan, benefitting 600 farmers and their families. With its scenic and breathtaking view, NIA sees the potential of the project as an agro-tourism site in the region.

The 1.0-MW hydropower facility located near the main canal of Pampanga River Irrigation System (PRIS), known to local residents as Rizal Dam, started its commercial operation in 2017.

The 200-kilowatt pilot floating solar project on a 2,500-square meter area over the Magat Reservoir located in Ramon, Isabela is inspired by the Giant Water Lily.

The P20.461-million Peñaranda Solar Powered Pump Irrigation Project has a service area of 228.878 hectares located in Barangays Poblacion I, Poblacion II, Santo Tomas in Peñaranda, and Pambuan, Gapan City, benefitting a total of 114 farmer-members of Penaranda IA.

The Chico River Pump Irrigation Project (CRPIP) is the first project of the Build, Build, Build Program funded by the Chinese Government. It targets to irrigate 8,700 hectares of agricultural land on 21 barangays in the Municipalities of Tuao and Piat, Cagayan (Region II) and in the Municipality of Pinukpuk, Kalinga (Cordillera Administrative Region).

The 69-Kilovolt Switching Station of the CRPIP

Diversion Main Canal of the CRPIP

The Babalak Communal Irrigation System located in Bashoy, Kabayan, Benguet

The acquisition of heavy, light, and transport equipment is part of NIA’s Re-Fleeting Program towards efficient monitoring and evaluation of the status of ongoing irrigation projects nationwide.

As part of the Agency’s Institutional Development Program, NIA Palawan Irrigation Management Office (Palawan IMO) conducts Basic Leadership Development Course (BLDC) Training for Papualan IA of Papualan Small Irrigation Project in the Municipality of Coron, Palawan on May 16, 2022.

 

**For questions and/or clarifications, you may contact:

EDEN VICTORIA C. SELVA
Department Manager A
NIA Public Affairs and Information Staff
E-mail: pais@nia.gov.ph
Landline: (02) 8921-3741 loc. 113

 

NIA CONDUCTS STRATEGIC PLANNING AND PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT WITH NCIA

June 8, 2022, 11:38 AM
 

NIA Central Office – The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) and the National Confederation of Irrigators Associations (NCIA) convenes for a Joint Strategic Planning and Program Development Workshop on June 1-3, 2022 at Penthouse, NIA Central Office, Quezon City.

The NIA-NCIA Joint Strategic Planning and Program Development Workshop aims to provide opportunity for NCIA Officers and Board of Trustees to present CY 2022 1st Quarter accomplishments and formulate strategic plans and programs. Further, issues and concerns of Irrigators Associations (IAs) on project implementation, organization and operation and maintenance of irrigation systems will be addressed.

Region XII RCIA Federation President Dante P. Cudal raised that in 2019, there was a surplus of palay in the region. Due to the oversupply of palay, farmers of Region XII were forced to sell their produce up to P11.00 to P12.00 per kilo than the current government support price of P17.00 to P19.00. Mr. Cudal narrated that even the National Food Authority (NFA) cannot anymore accommodate their produce.

Meanwhile, in Region VI, RCIA Federation President Joseph Renato Amponin shared that with Typhoon Agaton affecting the region in April 2022, there was a shortage of rice in Region VI. This caused the delay in planting of our farmers in the region. “With the existing high price of fertilizer of around P2,000.00 and other farm inputs, this really impacted our farmers in the region.”

With the incoming administration of president-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr., there is an initiative to lower the price of rice to P20.00 per kilo. NCIA President Remy N. Albano says that it will be feasible as long as the Marcos administration will focus on Research and Development (R&D) on farm inputs such as seeds, fertilizers, and insecticides that will favor our farmers. As to him, quality and/or government subsidized farm inputs will lower the production expenses of farmers that will lead to the lowering price of rice in the market.

Today, IAs harvest an average of 80 to 100 cavans per hectare. From here, expenses in labor and land preparation to harvesting will be deducted. With the rising farm inputs costs, Mr. Cudal shares that farmers are usually left with only small earnings to just a return of capital at the end.

Region XII RCIA Federation President Dante P. Cudal suggests that if the National Food Authority (NFA) will be the centralized government arm to buy fresh produce of farmers and be the only one to market them, the P20.00 per kilo of rice will be realized. If this happens, there will be a definite price point in buying palay and selling rice in the market.

For Region VI RCIA Federation President Joseph Renato Amponin, the initiative will be feasible once the Marcos administration subsidizes their farm inputs such as seeds, fertilizers, insecticides, and fuel most especially in this time that their prices are all-time high. Mr. Amponin says that farmers are both consumers and producers of rice thus, it will always be seeking the balance in the spectrum for the farmers.

As to our Irrigators Associations, the P20.00 per kilo of rice will be a great challenge for the incoming administration on how they will cope to realize this initiative that will favor both the rice consumers and producers, our Filipino farmers.

IAs also call for government subsidies on farm inputs as prices are still increasing, farmers’ representation for government policies, and proper coordination of government departments and agencies concerning agriculture to further aid improve the lives of our Filipino farmers.

Among those present in the event were NIA Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya, NIA Deputy Administrator for Engineering and Operations Sector C’zar M. Sulaik, NCIA Officers and Board of Trustees and other NIA Institutional Development Division (IDD) personnel

NIA Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya delivers his message during the NIA-NCIA Strategic Planning and Program Development Workshop

NIA Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya with the NCIA Officers and Board of Trustees during the NIA-NCIA Strategic Planning and Program Development Workshop

NIA Deputy Administrator for Engineering and Operations Sector C’zar M. Sulaik delivers his message during the NIA-NCIA Strategic Planning and Program Development Workshop

NIA Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya with the NCIA Officers and Board of Trustees

 

**For questions and/or clarifications, you may contact:

EDEN VICTORIA C. SELVA
Department Manager A
NIA Public Affairs and Information Staff
E-mail: pais@nia.gov.ph
Landline: (02) 8921-3741 loc. 113

 

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