One Meralco Group’s power generation units are targeting to build a total combined capacity of 1,500 MW of renewable energy (RE) in the next seven years as it pursues its goal of carbon neutrality or net zero emissions by 2050.
Recently speaking at a forum on business resilience and sustainability, Meralco PowerGen Corporation (MGEN) and Global Business Power Corporation (GBP) president and CEO Jaime T. Azurin said the pandemic has prompted the need for long-term transformational change under the ‘new normal.’
“We have set the ambitious target of reaching net zero by 2050, anchored on One Meralco Group’s sustainability agenda,” Azurin. “In the next seven years, we endeavor to build 1,500 MW of renewable energy.”
He shared that they have started with BulacanSol ’s 55 MWac solar plant which commenced operations in May of this year, with more solar projects underway. Ongoing is the construction of a solar plant in Baras, Rizal while EPC [engineering, procurement, and construction] negotiations are in progress for solar plants in Isabela, Nueva Ecija and Ilocos Norte.
The Group is also eyeing hydro, wind and solar storage that can compete in mid-merit space. Azurin explained that ‘all these are in support of the country’s target of 35% RE share by 2030, and eventually 50% by 2040.’
Because of the pandemic, Azurin said, “The world has come to realize the valuable importance of building resilience and integrating sustainable goals to future-proof and create lasting impact for the greater good.”
Highlighting that the health crisis has brought to light existing vulnerabilities and limitations, not only in the power sector, Azurin said, “We must all work together to include resilience planning for both present and future shocks. Recovery plans must not be limited to short-term measures to ramp up economic activities but also to look into long-term actions that are key to future resilience.”