20MW solar plant in Ilocos Sur catching up in FIT incentives race

by Myrna Velasco – February 9, 2016

from Manila Bulletin

Frontrunners in the solar race for feed-in-tariff (FIT) incentives are now gradually coming out, and the latest to reach full completion into commercial operation is the 20-megawatt solar farm in Currimao, Ilocos Norte.

The project developers – San Lorenzo Ruiz Builders and Developers Group Inc. of the Violago Group and European firm partner Soleq – have announced the facility’s inauguration this week.

The project, which commands an investment of US$40 million, is under corporate vehicle Mirae Energy Asia Corporation.

Mirae Energy has indicated that the facility is being lined up for FIT incentives, but its application is still ‘under process’.

While the solar farm can now deliver its capacity to the grid, the sponsor company has noted that there are no off-takers (capacity buyers) signed up yet for the project.

It just noted that “the project will make a significant contribution to meeting the current energy demand in the Philippines by using solar as a clean and cost-competitive alternative energy source to coal.”

According to Mirae Energy chairman Anthony J. Violago, the facility’s development had secured full backing from officials of its host local government units – primarily the province of Ilocos Norte.

“The project has driven economic growth in Ilocos Norte creating substantial local employment opportunities,” the project sponsor-firm has noted.

The plant as designed will “produce 33,000 megawatt hours of solar power per year,” which can then be distributed to 29,328 households annually,” Mirae Energy said.

In addition, it will save the country “an estimated 31.2 million liters of water and 16,566 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.” It cited that such shall be “equivalent to taking approximately 3,500 cars off the road.”