Monday, May 22, 2017

Envoy at hand-over of P10M 
Pamilacan solar technology

TAGBILARAN CITY, May 19, (PIA)--In the full spirit of collaboration with governments, German Ambassador to the Philippines Gordon Kricke witnessed the turn-over of a P10 million solar facility that would bring daytime power service to all households of Pamilacan Island in Baclayon town. 

Ambassador Kricke represented the German Government who would soon lend to WeGen Distributed Energy Philippines, a proven German software technology that could aggregate the energy collected by solar panels installed in houses and pool it for further use to share with other consumers. 

WeGen, the country's newest renewable energy sector provider in the country, handed to local officials including the local Electric Cooperative Association (ECA) a 39 kilowatt peak of photo voltaic (PV) and battery storage system that could respond to the daytime power needs of 329 households in the off grid island of Pamilacan. 

WeGen Chief Executive Officer Atty. Julito Sarmiento said in his first visit to the island meeting local officials, he saw Pamilacan National High School classrooms without power and the students deprived of better technologies in the absence of power. 

Pamilacan Island is served by an off the grid generator under the National Power Corporation's Small Power Unit Groups (SPUG) and only gets power from 6:00 PM to midnight daily, the consumers paying a subsidized P8 per kilowatt power. 

During class hours however, teachers would have to do extra effort to bring lessons across in crude visual aids despite the availability of computers and internet to other schools connected to the grid.

Only about 10 to 20% of Pamilacan secondary graduates proceed to college, a thing Sarmiento thinks should improve if the quality of education is also improved especially with the access of class hours power. 

With access to daytime power, Atty Sarmiento said this could spur socio-economic development in the poor community.

WeGen Chairman and founder Michael Saalfeld said the German government and the technology and believes this could be key to the development of Pamilacan. 

Unlike other private investors which allocate fractions of their profits to donate to marginalized communities through its corporate social responsibility (CSR), WeGen puts in its corporate social incarnation (CSI), one it donates before it could even earn, Sarmiento, who led the turn-over attended by community stakeholders and interested Bohol resort owners needing to personally see the installation. 

WeGen put up 135 mono-crystalline solar panels mounted on the retrofitted rooftop of the PNHS and then connected to 60 deep cycle silicon power maintenance free and eco-friendly batteries. 

The entire set up reportedly stores 200 ampere hours which would provide power to the whole island from 8:00 Am to 4:00 PM, Sarmiento said. 

Sarmiento, who used to be a seminarian, explained that WeGen is basically a community based energy producer that adopts the concept of distributed energy using the community who can also be consumers. 

Here, Sarmiento who explained that when solar farms can tie up the lands for 25 years at least, houses can carry the solar panels on their rooftops and thus make all consumers now producers. 

WeGen said they too are looking at other areas in Bohol to offer their off grid solutions for communities to access clean energy through its stand-alone-island solar solutions which generate resilient and renewable energy from decentralized locations like rooftops through its battery storage and aggregating software solutions. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)
Baclayon Mayor Benecio Uy and WeGen Philippines Atty Julito Sarmiento indulges German Ambassador to the Philippines Gordon Kricke to banter as the German envoy witnesses the handing over of the P10 million facility that can now provide daytime power to Pamilacan Island. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

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