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Meralco unit eyes floating solar plant in Laguna de Bay

MGen Renewable Energy Inc.,  a subsidiary of Meralco PowerGen Corp., plans to put up a 110-megawatt floating solar project in Laguna de Bay, a top executive said Wednesday.

“We are in the process of applying for a pilot [project] in Laguna Lake. We’re looking at... a 110-MW DC solar,” Meralco PowerGen president Rogelio Singson told reporters.

Singson said the company was in talks with a possible local partner for the project.

“We have not signed anything, but I believe there are four entities that have been granted the right to develop the pilot. We’re talking to one of them,” Singson said.

Singson said the solar project could be completed within 10 months.

“The requirement of energy is for pilot. We will set up a small one for pilot while they are developing the policy,” he said.

Singson said the company was waiting for the go signal from Laguna Lake Development Authority to proceed with the pilot project.

“We are just waiting for the green light to do the pilot,” Singson said.

He said floating solar would not be as expensive as land-based solar projects and would not have an impact on the use of the lake.

“LLDA still has to formulate the policy. The industry is trying to help LLDA. If they want, we can fund the study, prepare the policy that will not impact on the use of Laguna Lake. In fact, it will help as evaporation would be lessened because it will have cover,” he said.

Singson said the project would likely be connected to the Manila Electric Co.’s distribution line as the company was looking at the Meralco franchise area. Meralco PowerGen is the power arm of power distributor Meralco.

He said aside from the Laguna Lake project, Mgreen was also looking at floating solar projects in Tarlac, Nueva Ecija, Cagayan Valley, Quezon province and Bicol.

“I am focused on Luzon. I need to address the RPS [renewable portfolio standards] requirement of Meralco of about 600 MW,” Singson said.

Under the RPS program, Meralco is required to source a certain percentage of its power requirement from renewable energy sources.

MGreen recently secured an equity funding amounting to P424 million from Meralco that will be invested in various solar projects.

The Meralco board recently approved the request of MGreen for the funding.

Topics: MGen Renewable Energy Inc. , Meralco PowerGen Corp. , floating solar plant , Laguna de Bay
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