After electrifying Isla Verde with Solar grid last February 15, the Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) has plans to further their electrification program to Cagbalete, Quezon.
“Our sole direction is to really expand our footprint for Meralco to be able to reach areas that are underserved or unserved,” said Meralco Chief Executive Officer and President Oscar Reyes during the Association of the Electricity Supply Industry of East Asia and Western Pacific (AESIEAP) 2019-2020 press conference.
He said there is no date yet for the commencement of the said electrification as they are still waiting for certain approvals by the Department of Energy (DOE).
Meralco Vice President Ronnie Aperocho previously shared the firm’s plans to power up Cagbalete after Isla Verde.
“Gusto rin naming i-share sa ibang utilities later on at iba pang off-grid parang islands on how Meralco did it in its own territory. So, we can share the technology and how to design the system, how to run the system in a more cost effective way.”
Cagbalete Island is located in the province of Quezon in Mauban, which boasts of tourism potential owing to its rich marine diversity. It is, however, surrounded by water making it hard to connect to transmission lines or grid.
“It’s our strategic intent to bring power to a very nice island. Cagbalete has a number of resorts that really could grow, but they are not supplied with 24/7 reliable and affordable power,” Reyes said.
Image from Wikipedia commons
Unlike the Isla Verde electrification, the power distribution firm aims to bring a combination of renewable and back up load for the electrification in Cagbalete once approvals are settled.
The solar plant in Isla Verde has a total capacity of 32 kW, while the one in Cagbalete will be a hybrid, solar, and diesel energy generating 30-kilowatt power system.
“What we would like to do is to be able to provide power 24/7 basis so you have to combine solar and other energy sources,” Reyes said.
“It’s not only the business that we’re looking at, but we’re intent to connect and provide electricity to residents of Cagbalete,” he added.
The AESIEAP conference will be composed of two events, which are the AESIEAP CEO Conference and Conference of Electric Power Supply Industry (CEPSI) to be held on September 22-25, 2019 and November 29- December 3, 2020 respectively.
Aside from Meralco executives, other attendees of AESIEAP were CEO and President of Pio Benevidez; Deputy CEO of Meralco Ray Espinosa; National Grid Corporation President and CEO Anthony Alameda; National Telecommunications Commission President and CEO Melvin Matibag; DOE Undersecretary and Spokesperson Felix William Fuentebella; as well as, Secretary General of AESIEAP 2019-202 Rogelio Singson.