NEGROS Occidental Vice Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson said it will be the sugarcane planters who will decide if they will offer their lands to become part of the area where a solar plant will be built.

Lacson made the statement after Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. said that food security should be prioritized over the need for more energy sources.

The vice governor said that a balance should be struck between food security and energy.

It means that it should be determined how much land will be allowed to be converted, he said.

Lacson said he does not know how much the offers to sugar planters to sell or lease their lands to private companies who will build renewable energy plants.

"It will really depend on the owner if he will make money if it is converted. It is his right, "he said.

He also reiterated his earlier statement that he does not believe that "we will go hungry if we convert 1,000 hectares of land into a solar plant."

Boskowitz Development, a German firm, has expressed interest in leasing 1,000 hectares in the first district where it will build a 700-megawatt solar plant.