We Support Solar Para Sa Bayan in Bringing Cheap, Clean, Reliable Power in the Philippines

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Solar Para Sa Bayan is a social enterprise on a mission to bring cheap, clean, reliable 24/7 power across the Philippines, by constructing Solar-Battery Minigrids at zero cost to government. This year, over 500,000 Filipinos will benefit from projects in Mindoro, Palawan, Masbate, Batangas, Quezon, Aurora, Cagayan, Isabela, Negros, Misamis, Davao, and other areas that want better service.

Electric utilities wrongly claim that current laws give them exclusivity in their franchise areas, so government must craft new laws and policies that clearly allow companies like Solar Para Sa Bayan to compete on a non-exclusive basis and give consumers an alternative choice.

10 Reasons to Support the Establishment of Minigrids Across the Philippines:

1) Overwhelming Public Support. A recent Pulse Asia survey indicates 82% of Filipinos favor new options for electric service providers; 60% are dissatisfied with electricity prices; and 89% favor increasing the use of renewable energy in the Philippines.

2) Lower Cost. Filipinos pay the highest rates in Asia, as much as Php 12-16/kWh in some areas. Competition will allow Filipinos to switch to Minigrids, while encouraging traditional utilities to lower their rates to remain competitive.

3) Reliable Service. Filipinos suffer blackouts from traditional utilities due to outdated technology and limits of centralized generation. Minigrids provide superior service using advanced technology and de-centralized solutions for each town.

4) Accessible 24/7. An estimated 20 million Filipinos lack 24/7 electric service, due to complacency by traditional utilities and limits of the existing grid. Minigrids can be deployed in areas previously ignored, and can accelerate our country’s total electrification by 2022.

5) Zero Cost to Government. Traditional utilities receive subsidies for diesel fuel and grid extension of over Php 30 billion a year, and other subsidies. Solar Para Sa Bayan now operates on a private basis with zero government subsidies, saving taxpayer money for other government priorities.

6) Clean Energy. Traditional utilities are sourcing 80% of their energy from coal, which threatens our environment and contributes to climate change. Minigrids can utilize solar panels and battery storage to maximize the percentage sourced from renewable energy.

7) Resiliency & Security. Traditional utilities depend on a grid that is vulnerable to disasters and shortages of imported fossil fuels. Localized Minigrids dedicated for each town and using indigenous resources mitigate the risk of power interruptions and ensure our energy security.

8) Economic Development. Minigrid investments accelerate economic development, especially in rural areas, by creating employment during construction and operations, and by improving electric service to attract new industries and more investments.

9) Encourage Other Minigrids. Previous laws did not contemplate Minigrids, which until recently had limited, subsidized, or donor-funded operations. The legal recognition of these pioneering and viable Minigrids will encourage others to also enter this non-exclusive market.

10) Competition & Innovation. Minigrids not only directly benefit consumers, but also inspire traditional utilities to improve their services. The entry of new providers and technologies also catalyzes innovation, to benefit Filipinos nationwide.

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