Negros Occ. governor urges LGUs to go solar

Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson examines the various displays at the Renewable Energy Week and Expo Inaugural Launch held at the Ayala Event Center in Bacolod City on Monday. (Capitol PIO photo)

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines — Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson has called on local government units (LGUs) in the province to adopt solar energy solutions for their rooftops.

Speaking at the Renewable Energy Week and Expo Inaugural Launch held at the Ayala Event Center in Bacolod City, Lacson emphasized the importance of transitioning to renewable energy.

“We are encouraging all LGUs to solarize their rooftops,” Lacson told reporters on Monday. He noted that all local chief executives were invited to the event, which continues today (Tuesday), to explore the potential of solar energy.

The expo featured numerous exhibitors offering products and solutions to support the province’s solarization efforts.

“By going renewable, we can contribute to reducing the effects of climate change, plus the savings,” Lacson said. “But more important is to address the issue of climate change.”

While Lacson did not provide specific figures on potential savings for LGUs, he highlighted the provincial government’s own solarization initiative.

Starting this year, seven key government buildings will be fitted with solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, expected to save an estimated 132,080 kWh to 158,000 kWh per month. At P12 per kWh, this translates to monthly savings of P1.5 million to P1.8 million.

The provincial government properties set to be solarized include the Provincial Capitol, CyberCentre, Negros Residences, First Terminal Market of Negros Occidental, and surrounding government buildings.

Lacson explained that the government would not purchase the systems outright but would pay for the installations on a monthly basis.

“If we buy the system, it would cost the government P70 to P75 million. We thought we could use the money for something else,” he said.

Currently, only the La Carlota City and Sipalay City governments in Negros Occidental have installed PV systems. Lacson urged other LGUs to consider similar projects and, if necessary, pass ordinances to facilitate the adoption of solar energy.

“If it’s required to pass an ordinance, by all means do it. The intention is to go renewable,” Lacson stressed.

Earlier, Lacson said that the installation of 1,270 kilowatts total installed capacity of solar PV systems in provincial buildings would significantly cut energy costs and contribute to sustainability efforts.