PowerSource First Bulacan Solar Inc. said its 50-megawatt solar power plant started commercial operations to provide clean and renewable power to the Luzon grid amid the high demand during the dry period.
BulacanSol, the newly completed plant, secured a clearance to operate from the Energy Regulatory Commission on May 12.
The P4.25-billion project in San Miguel, Bulacan is a joint undertaking of MGen Renewable Energy Inc., which owns 60 percent of the project, and PowerSource Energy Holdings Corp. with 40 percent.
MGreen is the renewable energy unit of Meralco PowerGen Corp. which, in turn, is the power generation arm of Manila Electric Co.
“This is a modest step into renewables but a significant one for Meralco. We look forward to many more investments in renewables, particularly solar, as we attempt to achieve that balance in fuel sourcing, which will ultimately be biased towards renewables,” Meralco chairman Manuel Pangilinan said in a statement.
BulacanSol now plays a significant role in One Meralco Group’s long-term sustainability agenda.
“In June 2019, Meralco made the first announcement that it would join the shift to renewable energy and it will adopt sustainable practices for the One Meralco Group. And today, we realize the very first renewable power plant – the first of several that One Meralco has lined up for investment and sourcing,” said Meralco president and chief executive Ray Espinosa.
PFBSI chairman Rogelio Singson said BulacanSol signified the commitment of One Meralco and PowerSource Group to help ensure energy security through clean, cost-competitive and sustainable power.
“We pledge to continue building more environmentally conscious projects as part of our commitment to a sustainable energy transition for the future generations,” said Singson, who is also the president and chief executive of MGen.
“As the first operational project of MGreen, BulacanSol is a very important milestone that drives us to aggressively pursue more projects that will help us achieve our target of building a renewable energy portfolio with a capacity of up to 1,500MW in the next five to seven years,” Singson said.
Singson acknowledged the strong support BulacanSol received from national government agencies including the Department of Energy, Energy Regulatory Commission and the Department of Public Works and Highways and the local government unit of San Miguel led by Mayor Roderick Tiongson.
Construction activities for the plant started in December 2019 following the issuance of notice-to-proceed to SUMEC Complete Equipment & Engineering Co. Ltd., the engineering, procurement and construction contractor for the project.
It faced delayed due to the quarantine restrictions and a string of weather disturbances that limited movements at the power plant site.
“We share this achievement with our employees, engineers, contractors, and partners in the government and private sector who worked together to bring this project into reality. With their perseverance, determination and hard work, we are finally going to see the light,” said PFBSI president and PowerSource chairman Aloysius Colayco.
Ricardo Lazatin, PFBSI vice chairman and PowerSource president and chief executive, said not even the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns experienced during the construction period hindered the project completion.
“We are confident that this solar plant will help the much needed power requirements of our country especially during these challenging times,” Lazatin said.