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Philippines moves closer to building world’s largest solar project

MANILA (BLOOMBERG) – Solar Philippines has taken a further step toward massively expanding the nation’s renewables capacity, including with one of the world’s top projects, as it aims to help meet rising energy demand and aid a shift away from coal.

The firm has submitted energy contract offers that, if approved by customers and regulators, would potentially amount to nine terrawatt-hours a year and enable a roster of 10 gigawatts of solar projects to proceed, the company said yesterday in a statement.

The developments would begin operation mostly between 2025 to 2026. Planned facilities would help address a potential power shortage and significantly boost the nation’s renewable energy generation, according to the company.

Government data showed the Philippines had 1,127 megawatts of grid-connected solar capacity at the end of last year, the statement said.

The Philippines gets about 57 per cent of its electricity from coal, burning the equivalent of 29 million tonnes of high quality fuel, according to data from Bloomberg.

Solar Philippines is building 3.5 gigawatts of solar and 4.5 gigawatts-hours of battery storage with billionaire Enrique Razon.

The company said that development has been described as the world’s largest solar project, though BNEF data shows other proposals, including in Australia, India and China, are targetting more capacity.

Another unit is developing a 500-megawatt solar farm in Nueva Ecijia province in the north, and the firm has ventures with other parties including an Ayala Corp unit.

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