CONSIDERED as the first solar power plant in Western Visayas, the Cosmo Solar Energy Inc. opened its 5.6 megawatts (MW) Iloilo Solar Power Plant in Barangay Narat-an, Miagao, Iloilo last September 8 in a move to connect to the national grid.
President and CEO Rudy Golez Jr. of Cosmo Solar Energy Inc. said his firm has invested P745 million for the project and awarded a 25-year solar energy contract by the Department of Energy for the development of a renewable energy facility sitting on a 15-hectare property in the village.
The company is also planning to put up another solar power plant in an adjacent property in Barangay Tapican, a part of the neighboring town of San Joaquin, Iloilo.
The second phase will provide an additional 6.5 MW of solar power into the national grid.
Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor led in the inaugural rites with Miagao Mayor Maaro Napulan, Antique Governor Rhodora Cadiao, Congressman Richard Garin of the first district, and Erlinda Chiu of National Economic and Development Authority (Neda).
The Sacasol Solar Power Plant in San Carlos City was then dubbed as the first solar power plant in the country, and in Western Visayas, when Negros Occidental was still part of Western Visayas.
With Negros Occidental already part of the Negros Island Region, the Iloilo solar power plant may be considered as the first in Western Visayas.
Neda noted that renewable energy projects have been steadily increasing in Western Visayas.
The most recent of which include the Villaciga hydropower project in Antique, the San Lorenzo wind farm in Guimaras and the Nabas wind farm in Aklan.