QUICK READ: The eagle named Makilala-Hiraya will be important in adding and monitoring eagles in this Philippine forest.
Last June 8, a Philippine Eagle was rescued after being mobbed by a flock of crows in Barangay Kisante in Makilala, North Cotabato, near the Mt. Apo Natural Park where Energy Development Corporation operates. No serious injuries were found on the bird, but it had a few abrasions on the wing and tail feathers. The eagle was identified as female and estimated to be around three to four years of age. DENR Kidapawan took temporary custody of the bird before turning it over to representatives of the Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEF) for further examination and rehabilitation.
The eagle was given the name “Makilala,’ after the place where she was found. According to the Philippine Eagle Foundation, securing her release and ensuring her safety in the wild is important so she can find a mate, nest, and contribute to the survival of the Philippine Eagle. “Releasing this eagle is important in keeping the wild population thriving. Protecting the existing wild population is as significant as breeding the eagle in captivity to add new birds in our forests. There is also an opportunity to discover the other Philippine Eagles in the area in monitoring this eagle after its release.” says PEF Director of Research and Conservation Dr. Jayson Ibanez. The PEF will monitor the eagle’s condition and activity in the Philippine forest for the next six months.
With that, the Philippine Eagle Foundation reached out to their long-time partner, geothermal leader Energy Development Corporation, for the release of the bird and the monitoring to be conducted thereafter. At EDC’s 108-megawatt Mt. Apo Geothermal Project (MAGP), watersheds are well-maintained and forests are lush. The 701-hectare protected geothermal reservation surrounding MAGP is home to 39 species of mammals and 165 species of birds, including the Philippine Eagle. EDC has been partners with PEF for nearly two decades, and has adopted Geothermica in 2012, through PEF’s Adopt-an-Eagle program.
The protection of the iconic national bird remains a priority for the company’s Biodiversity Conservation and Monitoring Program (BMCP). EDC accepted PEF’s proposal to release Makilala in a target site within its Mt. Apo geothermal reservation, and committed their support of the monitoring activities that will ensure that the bird reaches sexual maturity and has the chance to nest. EDC employees gave Makilala a second name, “Hiraya,” a Filipino word that translates to “fruit of one’s hopes, dreams, and aspirations”.
Over a month after her rescue, Makilala-Hiraya was released back into the Philippine forest in the Mt. Apo Natural Park in Makilala, North Cotabato on July 28. The release was viewed by the public through a live stream on the EDC BINHI and Philippine Eagle Foundation Facebook Pages.
EDC CSR-PR Head Atty. Allan Barcena said, “EDC fully supports the protection and conservation of the Philippine Eagle. We continue to work with the Philippine Eagle Foundation and our local governments towards protecting them and their natural habitat by increasing and maintaining forest cover.” The release and monitoring of “Makilala-Hiraya” is in partnership with the PEF, DENR, and the Municipality of Makilala.
EDC operates the 108-MW Mt. Apo Geothermal Project, which supplies clean and uninterrupted power. EDC is one of the world’s largest geothermal producers and the country’s leading renewable energy company. For over 40 years, EDC has been implementing comprehensive environmental management programs that enhance the ecosystem and corporate social responsibility programs that ensure inclusive growth for its partner communities. EDC is a subsidiary of the First Gen Corporation, the country’s largest clean energy company, with a portfolio that included natural gas, geothermal, solar, wind, and hydro.
EDC’s 1,499 MW total installed capacity generates 42 percent of the country’s total renewable energy, with its 1,204 MW geothermal portfolio accounting for 62 percent of the country’s total installed geothermal capacity and putting the Philippines on the map as the world’s third largest geothermal producer.
The Energy Development Corporation (EDC) is a pioneer in generating 100% clean, renewable, and reliable power as an electricity supplier in the Philippines for over 40 years. With power plants all over Visayas and Mindanao, the company is one of the biggest producers of geothermal energy in Asia and is expanding its reach in the international market, allowing it to offer customers affordable energy rates. EDC also strives to provide the best customer service it can to all its clients by having helpful salespeople and easy to understand contracts. Because of all of this, it is poised to become the premier supplier of electricity for the Philippines’ Green Energy Option Program. EDC takes its mission as a renewable energy provider seriously and goes beyond sustainability by investing in programs that enhance the environment and empower its partner communities, thereby fostering regenerative development. The company has also been working toward being carbon-neutral by improving its energy efficiency, as well as implementing various greening projects to ensure that its mission to provide future generations with a better life remains intact.