First and Oldest (Hydroelectric) Power Plants in the Philippines



There is a very little, if not none, documents that will verify what power plant is the very first in the Philippines. However, based on the author’s personal visit to some of the plants, and some research and conversation with some reliable individuals from the industry, he compiled some of the oldest power plants in the Philippines, all hydroelectric power plants, and most are still operational today.

23.50 MW Caliraya Hydroelectric Power Plant (Lumban, Laguna)
Caliraya hydro plant was built by NPC and commissioned on 1942-1950 and one of the CBK Plants (Caliraya - Botocan - Kalayaan Plant Complex). The complex is now owned by one of the IPPS’s of NPC, the consortium of Sumitomo Corporation and Electric Power Development Co., Ltd (J-Power) who take over the CBK Power Company Ltd. and Kalayaan Power Management Corporation, the former owners of CBK Plants who purchased it from NPC through an “anomalous” deal. Based from some former NPC engineers, Caliraya Hydro Electric Plant is the first power Plant in the Philippines. The current owner rehabilitated the three plants and re-commissioned it on 2002-2003.

23 MW Botocan Hydroelectric Power Plant (Majayjay, Laguna)
Botocan hydro plant was built by NPC and commissioned on 1946-1948 and one of the CBK Plants (Caliraya - Botocan - Kalayaan Plant Complex.

1×560 kVA Palakpakin Hydroelectric Power Plant (Laguna)
1×150 kVA + 2×200 kVA Balugbog
Hydroelectric Power Plant (Laguna)
1×75kV Unit Kalibato
Hydroelectric Power Plant (Laguna)
All mini-hydro in size, these 3 Plants are among the oldest in the Philippines (1933 - 1938). The owner is the Philippine Power Development Corporation (Philpodeco).

The Plants are sparsely located in Laguna Areas, closed to Botokan HEPP. These plants are still operational but already in bad condition. It’s connected to the TransCo grid through the Botocan substation

Villa Escudero Hydro Plant (San Pablo, Quezon Province)

Based on this blog,, and on the engrave markings, it seems that this plant was built sometime in 1937. It was supposed to generated power for the Escudero coconut plantation in Tayabas, Quezon. It’s no longer in use but very well-preserved.

I haven’t seen this plant yet to confirm the claim and get its rated capacity. But if the blog’s claim is true, it was indeed one of the oldest.

  • who discovered geothermal energy in the philippines?

  • very informative. thank you :) 

  • nag hahanap kami na pwede pag invest ng power plant

  • greg_esamelco

    can you recommend synchronizing panel and control panel for our 2 x 500kva mini-hydro power plant? yung hich tech na (automatic synchronizing). thanks

  • jcmiras

    Actually, almost all of the control systems now-a-days can do automatic synchronization. This shouldn't be a problem specially for simple and small system's like mini-hydro. I couldnt make an economical recommendation for a mini-hydro since my experience is for large one. But as mentioned, many available control systems in the market should do the job, you just need to evaluate and consider the cost.

  • pwede po bng mgtanong,anu po b ang source ng hydroelectric power??

  • jcmiras

    I don't know if this is a prank question but anyway, to answer your "question", as the term implies, the source of power of a hydroelectric power plant is, basically, water (H20, tubig). A body of water that is located or stored on a higher ground flows down into a tube, which consequently, turns a turbine, and converts the potential energy of the water into rotational kinetic energy. Th turbine is coupled to a generator which converts the rotational kinetic energy produced by the turbine into electric energy. If you still remember your elementary physics, you should be able to comprehend this. The formula of converting the potential energy of water into electric power is; Power = 9.81 x d x Q x h x eff,
    Power is the electric power produced (in Watts)
    9.91 = is the acceleration due to earth's gravity (m/s^2)
    d = is the density of water, which is 1000kg/m^3 if pure water
    Q = is the water's flow rate (m^3 per second)
    h = is the net height difference between the tail water or the lower body of water and the surface of water in the dam
    eff = is the combined efficiency of the turbine and generator.

    Hope that helps. :)

  • pwede po bang mag coduct ng research d2?

  • jcmiras


  • hi! \im a student from perpetual laguna., pwede po ba mag conduct ng plant visit dito? kanino po ba makikipag coordinate if ever. tnx po., reply na lng po sa emeil ad ko.

  • jcmiras

    Hi jerome,

    I am not connected and affiliated to any power plants mentioned above.

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