SNAP-Benguet holds annual community forum in Itogon

SN Aboitiz Power-Benguet (SNAP-Benguet) strengthened its commitment to energizing a sustainable future during its annual host community forum (HCF) with the theme “Creating a Sustainable Energy Future: The Impact of Climate Change on Hydropower and Our Communities” on October 12, 2023 at barangay Tuding in Itogon, Benguet.

In his keynote speech, SNAP Group President and CEO Joseph Yu discussed the impact of climate change on hydropower companies. He highlighted the company’s focus on providing sustainable and equitable solutions that can reduce the effects of climate change and create a better future for communities.

“We continue to leverage new technology such as improved weather and inflow forecasting to optimize the operations of our hydropower plants. We are also developing other renewable energy (RE) sources such as solar, and RE-complementary technologies like battery energy storage systems,” Yu said.

Around 60 participants from local government units and indigenous people’s organizations (IPO) attended  this year’s HCF.

Itogon Sangguniang Bayan member and Tinongdan Indigenous Peoples Organization (TINPO) chairperson Hon. Norberto Pacio thanked SNAP for its support to the community.

“SNAP, through its various projects, has been instrumental in providing assistance to Itogon and IP groups. They provide educational scholarships, livelihood projects, and other forms of assistance that benefit communities,” he said.

For the past 15 years, the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) and community investment initiatives have supported 480 projects valued at around PhP198 million. This includes providing educational, health, and livelihood assistance, as well as investing in cultural and heritage protection, infrastructure and environmental initiatives.

In 2022, the company renewed its sustainability commitment by integrating it into core strategies. They also embarked on an avifauna assessment along the Ambuklao-Binga watershed to support conservation efforts. To date, the company has planted 201,115 seedlings over 165 hectares. These initiatives demonstrate the company’s dedication to renewable energy solutions and proactive measures to protect biodiversity.

“Addressing the challenges of climate change go hand-in-hand with our commitment to the progress of our communities; I look forward to working together with you to create a sustainable energy future,” Yu said.