Aboitiz breaks ground for Pangasinan solar farm

Cayanga-Bugallon Solar Groundbreaking

Aboitiz Power Corporation has broken ground for its 94-megawatt peak (MWp) Cayanga-Bugallon solar power project in Pangasinan.

The country’s largest power generator formally made the announcement in virtual ceremony on Thursday.

Pangasinan Gov. Amado Espino III welcomed AboitizPower’s multi-billion-peso project, saying that this significant investment in sustainable power generation will help address the country’s need for more and cleaner energy sources to fuel the nation’s growth.

“Today marks a milestone in Pangasinan as we break new grounds to provide a safe and brighter future for our province and for our fellow Filipinos. This starts our tie-up to provide safe and renewable electric power to our people while protecting the environment for the next generations to enjoy,” he said.

AboitizPower, through a special-purpose vehicle wholly owned by subsidiary Aboitiz Renewables, Inc. (ARI), in December last year awarded to JGC Philippines, Inc. the Engineering, Procurement, and Construction contract for the project, with a total investment of Php4.5 billion.

“Cayanga Solar is a very significant project for us at ARI. This marks the beginning of our exciting journey ahead — growing our renewable energy portfolio over the next 10 years to accelerate the Philippine energy transition to more environmentally sustainable sources,” said ARI Executive Director David Smith.

Located in Barangay Cayanga in Bugallon town, the 196-hectare project would be AboitizPower’s second solar facility after its 59 MWp solar plant in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental.

Construction is set to begin on the project immediately and is targeted to be operational by the fourth quarter. JGC had completed the site investigation works and the results were used for the ongoing detailed engineering and design of the facilities. Temporary facilities are being erected and completion of the access road going to the plant is currently underway.

AboitizPower said the solar plant is expected to produce upon completion some 147 million kilowatt-hours of clean energy annually or equivalent to the yearly power consumption of 60,000 average homes. The majority of the facility’s capacity will be contracted for retail electricity supply, which can help bring cleaner and more sustainable energy to power consumers across the country. 

“In our partnership with you, the Department of Energy hopes that other companies and individuals will follow and do their advocacy for renewable energy and lessen our dependence on fossil fuels,” Energy Usec. Felix William Fuentebella told company officials during the virtual event.

“The groundbreaking of this solar farm proves that solar energy is technically and economically competitive and could deliver clean and green energy, helping our nation to mitigate climate change impacts through the reduction of carbon footprints by offsetting the energy produced by these fossil fuels,” he added.

AboitizPower said last year that it will invest around Php190 billion to build an additional 3,700 megawatts in renewables capacity for it to comprise half of the firm’s power generating portfolio by 2030.