Meralco eyes solar venture partners


The Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) is exploring partnerships with local and global players for solar projects, as the power distributor is venturing into the renewable energy (RE) business.

Alfredo Panlilio, Meralco senior vice president for Customer Retail Services and Corporate Communications, said the firm supports the development of RE and tapping renewable energy as a good value proposition for its customers.

“We think that the RE space will grow and we want to be part of that growth,” Panlilio said.

He noted that company established the Meralco Powerlab in 2011 as a proof-of-concept installation for solar and wind power.

Given the global developments in RE—especially solar—he said Meralco is interested in exploring partnerships with industry players.

“We are eager to get into solar, but with an electrical engineer’s eye to ensure safe and reliable operation of distribution grids,” Panlilio added.

Solar installations for both residential and business purposed can influence the operations of distribution grids that may impact on the risks faced by costumers, he said.

Panlilio noted that solar photovoltaic (PV) installations in sync with the grid rely on the quality of power delivered by the distribution utility.

“That is why power companies around the world put in place procedures to ensure that everyone is safe and the electric service is not compromised and interrupted, the Meralco official noted.

There are solar PV installation standards mandated by the government, but there are no standards on the accreditation of solar contractors, and equipment standards are still being developed to date, he added.

“What we have been doing at this point is to provide guidance on the proper installation and use of PV panels and systems, and how these will connect to Meralco,” Panlilio noted.


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