The largest solar farm in Southeast Asia is not located in Ilocos Norte, contrary to the claim of social media users campaigning for Gov. Imee Marcos.
The posts—one of the earliest appeared on March 25—enumerated five reasons why people should vote for the late dictator’s daughter in the May midterm polls.
One of the reasons read: “ILOCOS NORTE holds the biggest solar farm and largest wind farm in SOUTHEAST ASIA.”
While the social media posts were wrong in saying that the largest solar farm in Southeast Asia is in Ilocos Norte, they were correct that the biggest wind farm in the region is in the province.
Completed in 2014, the 150-MW Burgos Wind Farm in Burgos, Ilocos Norte is the largest wind farm in Southeast Asia. The facility consists of 50 wind turbines, each with a capacity of three megawatts.
The province’s four wind farms, including Bangui—Southeast Asia’s first—have a total installed capacity of 282.9 megawatts, according to the DOE list for Luzon power plants.
A fact check by University of the Philippines Journalism Department for tsek.ph found the claim of having the biggest solar farm in Southeast Asia to be false. It cited various local and foreign news accounts.
According to Solarplaza, a global independent platform for solar energy industry based in the Netherlands, the biggest operational solar farm in the region is the 132.5-megawatt Cadiz Solar Power Plant in Cadiz City, Negros Occidental.
The plant is owned by Helios Solar Energy Corporation and is being operated by Bouygues Construction.
Helios also topped the Department of Energy’s 2018 list of solar plants in the country.
Solar farms in Ilocos Norte, such as those in Currimao and Burgos towns, were not even included on Solarplaza’s list of top 10 solar plants in Southeast Asia.
The solar farms in the Philippines included on the list aside from Helios were the 80-MW Negros Island Solar Power Plant, 63-MW Calatagan Solar Plant and 60-MW Toledo Solar Project.
— Gaea Katreena Cabico