PHL’s largest solar center to rise in Tarlac

CONCEPCION, Tarlac—A P10-billion solar project that can supply electricity to 300,000 households is set to rise in Barangay Santa Rosa in this municipality.

The 150-megawatt (MW) Concepcion Solar Farm of Solar Philippines aims to provide a cleaner alternative- energy source to the Filipino people and make the Philippines a leader for solar energy worldwide.

Leandro Leviste, Solar Philippines president and CEO, said the facility is going to be the biggest in the country and, most important, the largest unsubsidized solar project with batteries in the world.

The project will consist of approximately 450,000 solar panels in over 150 hectares, with room to expand as demand for solar power with batteries increases.

“In over three decades of operation, it is expected to offset over 3 million tons of CO2, equivalent to planting over 15 million trees,” Leviste said.

Meanwhile, the Department of Energy (DOE) expressed its full support to the construction of the P10- billion, 150-MW solar farm that can supply power to the entire province of Tarlac.

Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi said one of the objectives of the DOE is to energize all households by 2022.

“We are finding a balance for the demand and supply. As of now, the country’s power demand is something like 13,000 MW. However, our supply is barely 14,000 MW. The supply is barely meeting its demand, that’s why we need more,” Cusi said.

The DOE is technology neutral and is eyeing every possible source of power, especially for far-flung barangays and island provinces.

“If solar power from this project can be stored, then we can source a lot of power from this,” Cusi said.

As the country enters the summer season, the DOE is keenly watching the daily condition of the power plants to make sure the country has enough electricity and to avoid any power interruptions and spike in power prices.

“How I wished this project has been realized earlier. With the inverters already available, this is no longer a groundbreaking, but more of a work in process,” Cusi said.

Inverters play a crucial role in any solar-energy system and are often considered the brains of a project with the basic function of inverting the direct current output into alternating current for commercial appliances.

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Catherine Joy L. Maglalang is the Bulacan correspondent of the BusinessMirror. She is also connected to some community newspapers such as Dyaryo LAKAN, Lathalaing Kaakibat ng Mamamayan and Mabuhay, lingguhang Pilipino mula pa noong 1980. Ms. Maglalang is also the elected secretary of the Kaugnay Media Defense Corps, Inc. of the 48 Infantry Battalion of the 7th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army. She was previously connected to Radyo TV Bulacan, Inc. dubbed, "Ang nag-iisang Kapampangan sa bakuran ng Radyo Bulacan," as a regular volunteer reporter and co-anchor of 'Puntong Bulakenyo ni Kuya Mon Lazaro.' In March 2016, she finished Bachelor of Arts in Broadcasting at the La Verdad Christian College-Apalit.