Meralco unit starts work on solar project

Another solar power project of Meralco PowerGen Corp. (MGen), the power generation arm of Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), will be added to its portfolio to meet its target renewable energy (RE) capacity of 1,500 megawatts (MW) in the next 7 years.

MGen Renewable Energy Inc. (MGreen), a wholly-owned RE unit of MGen, and partner Vena Energy, said on Wednesday the construction of the 68 MW solar project in Currimao, Ilocos Norte is on track. 

The project is set to complete energization by the end of 2022, and commence commercial operations by the first quarter of 2023.

“We are looking forward to commencing its operations soon and witnessing how it would help advance economic progress and create better lives for all,” said MGen President and CEO Jaime T. Azurin.

MGreen entered into a partnership with Vena Energy last February for the development, construction and operation of this new solar project.

“We hope that through our partnership with MGreen, this project will play an important role in accelerating the energy transition in the Philippines,” Vena Energy Philippines Head Samrinder Nehria said.

They recently held a ceremony to lay a time capsule in celebration of the continued progress and on-track construction.

“Today is a celebration of both small and big wins, and even the trials we have successfully overcome along the way. We are most grateful for the continued support of the local government of Currimao and Ilocos Norte, and to everyone working on the ground for the timely accomplishment of this solar facility with Vena Energy,” said Azurin.

Among those who graced the event were Governor Matthew Marcos Manatoc and Vice Governor Cecillia Araneta-Marcos of the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte, and Mayor Edward Quilala and Vice Mayor Sandra Cabreros of the Municipality of Currimao.

“We are grateful to the government of Currimao and Ilocos Norte for their continued support for our second project here, and we look forward to delivering it on time safely for the benefit of the nation and our host communities,” said Nehria.

Vena Energy is a leading renewable energy company in the Asia-Pacific region that owns, develops, constructs, operates, manages, and commercializes a renewable energy portfolio totaling 18 gigawatts of solar, onshore wind, offshore wind, battery energy storage, and hybrid RE projects.

In 2021, MGen commenced commercial operations of BulacanSol’s 55 MWsolar plant in San Miguel, Bulacan, followed by the construction of another 75 MW solar project in Baras, Rizal through PH Renewables, Inc.

Meanwhile, Meralco said it has adopted a sustainability scorecard covering the utility firm’s entire value chain.

The Meralco Supplier Sustainability Scorecard (MS3) was established as a tool to assess suppliers and contractors on key environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria, while using the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) and the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards as guiding principles.

MS3 provides Meralco a comprehensive view of its business partners’ ESG performance and is now incorporated in the company’s vendor accreditation process. Lenie Lectura