Aboitiz expands solar portfolio

Published May 20, 2021, 4:06 PM

by Myrna M. Velasco

Public company Aboitiz Power Corporation is expanding its investment in the solar farm development space with its greenfield 74-megawatt project in Bugallon, Pangasinan.

The company disclosed that it already secured approval for the project and is moving into the development stage.

The construction of the solar farm will kick off by the second half of this year and is targeted to reach commercial stream by the fourth quarter of 2022.

The Cayanga solar farm venture is being lined up as a viable follow-through to the 59MW peak solar facility of the Aboitiz group in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental. That power plant started commercial operation in 2016.

Emmanuel V. Rubio, president and CEO of Aboitiz Power, indicated that this new solar farm venture “is another step towards achieving our 10-year strategy with regard to significantly increasing our RE capacity and aiming for a 50:50 balance between our Cleanergy and thermal portfolios.”

The company’s next decade of project developments will mostly lean on RE technologies, as well as other cleaner energy resources like gas, so it can balance its carbon footprints as previous power installations were mostly thermal facilities.

The new solar facility will be sited in Cayanga in Bugallon town, which is about 13 kilometers southwest of the province’s capital of Lingayen.

According to Rubio, “majority of the solar facility’s capacity will be contracted for retail electricity supply, which we hope can help bring more sustainable energy to homes and businesses in the country.”

By offering the plant’s capacity via the retail market, Aboitiz Power reiterated that “this will give contestable customers another option to go green, in line with (the company’s) commitment to being an effective partner for progress and driving change for the people today as well as for generations to come.”

Aside from the go-signal secured from relevant national government agencies, Aboitiz Power noted that it had also gotten already the strong backing of its host-province.

Pangasinan Governor Amado Espino III stated that they are throwing full support to the Aboitiz Power solar project. He said that by choosing Bugallon as site, the project “will definitely empower our mission of making Pangasinan number one.”