By Jason B. Neola
NABUA, Camarines Sur --- For the next 22 years, the Camarines Sur Polytechnic Colleges (CSPC) here will start consuming free electricity.
This, after the government learning institution was installed with 240Kw solar power system, an integral part of its administration’s vision of providing its entire campus with clean and renewable power supply 24/7.
“Here on, CSPC will be spared from the annoying power interruptions or brown outs that torment the community more so during summer time. After 8 years of paying the capital cost, the CSPC will start consuming free electricity for the next 17 to 22 years,” says Engr. Bernardo Fabula, president and chief executive officer of Equator Energy Corporation, the project contractor.
The energy firm, which is setting the trail to become the Philippine’s largest solar and wind energy provider, delivers cheaper and cleaner source of energy to Filipinos.
Fabula described the hybrid 240Kw solar power system as the biggest and the first in the country to be installed in a government learning institution. “The EEC, three months after it started the CSPC solar project, was commissioned by Western Mindanao State University in Zamboanga Del Norte to install another hybrid solar system in its campus. The undertaking, once completed, will be the second in the Philippines,” he said.
The formal commissioning and turn-over ceremony of the power facility at the CSPC was held last Saturday, April 14, this year.
In her acceptance speech, CSPC President Dulce Atian conveyed her utmost gratitude to everyone who became involved in making the project possible. “The solar power system embraces our eco-friendly mission as a green institution having been the recipient of Saringaya Award in 2014, 2016 and 2017 and awarded second place in 2015 Search for Eco-Friendly Schools organized by regional office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), she said.
Talking about CSPC’s environmental achievements that helped to catapult it to the DENR’s hall of fame, Atian said: “the school’s solar power system is another testimony to our continuing and deeper commitment in sustaining our green initiatives and advocacies as we create positive environmental impact and awareness on emerging environmental challenges.”
In his turn-over speech, Fabula said that with the savings generated from using the power system, one could expect more development projects and programs to come from the learning institution. He expressed hope that the CSPC experience shall pave the way for the installation of similar facility in other school campuses across the country, and will inspire public and private institutions to do the same.
Thru net metering law, Fabula said, the facility will also provide additional power to the local electric cooperative by exporting no less than 100Kw solar capacity of energy to its system.
“In general, any additional energy supply from any producer/generator serves as game changer which helps increase the supply of this basic commodity and consequently reduce the price of electricity in the country,” he said.
Also known as net energy metering, net metering is a solar incentive that allows one to store energy in the electric grid. When one’s solar panels produce excess power, that energy is sent to the grid and in exchange one can pull from the grid when the system is under-producing like during nighttime.
With the right size solar energy system, one can produce enough electricity to match the required electricity for the entire year. However, the amount of electricity that solar panels produce will vary throughout the year. Net metering helps to account for these differences by crediting one for the excess electricity that his/her panels produced so that it can be use later.