FB posts on Ilocos Norte solar farm wrong

Written by
University of the Philippines Journalism Department
Last modified
Sunday, April 7, 2019 - 11:11
Screenshot of false Facebook post











The largest solar farm in Southeast Asia is not in Ilocos Norte, as various Facebook posts pushing the senatorial candidacy of governor Imee Marcos insist.

But the posts--one of the earliest appeared on March 25; others were widely shared days later-- correctly stated the biggest wind farm in the region is in Ilocos Norte.

Quoting verbatim five reasons people should vote Marcos, the posts read:

4. ILOCOS NORTE holds the biggest solar farm and largest wind farm in SOUTHEAST ASIA.

The largest solar farm in Southeast Asia to date is the 132.5-megawatt Helios plant in Cadiz City, Negros Occidental commissioned in March 2016, according to various local and foreign news accounts.  

Helios tops the Department of Energy’s 2018 list of solar plants in the country. The Currimao solar plant in Ilocos Norte commissioned in February 2016 has an installed capacity of 20 megawatts, or just a sixth of Helios’.

Solar farms in Ilocos Norte, including the newer 4.2-megawatt  Burgos solar farm, are not even among the top 10 solar plants in Southeast Asia.  

A list compiled by the Rotterdam-based Solarplaza for a two-day global conference on solar power held in Singapore last year includes the 80-megawatt Negros Island Solar Power Plant, 63-megawatt Calatagan Solar Plant and the 60-megawatt Toledo Solar Project besides Helios among the top 10.

But Ilocos Norte holds the distinction of hosting the largest wind farm in Southeast Asia following the inauguration in 2014 of the 150-megawatt Burgos wind farm spread over a 600-hectare site.

The DOE list for Luzon power plants shows the province’s four wind farms, including Bangui, Southeast Asia’s first, having a total installed capacity of 282.9 megawatts.

First Balfour said the 4.2-megawatt Burgos solar farm it built alongside the biggest wind farm “put Ilocos Norte at the forefront of renewable energy initiatives being the first location in the world to host a combined solar and wind farm.”


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