Robinsons mall now largest solar-powered 'off-grid' mall


Posted at Mar 05 2015 01:58 PM | Updated as of Mar 05 2015 09:58 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Robinsons Place Palawan is now the world's largest solar-powered "off-grid" mall, according to Solar Philippines.

In a statement, the solar provider said Robinsons Place Palawan now features 4,710 solar panels and 39 inverters using German technology over 15,000 square meters.

Robinsons Land president Frederick Go and Solar Philippines president Leandro Leviste launched the project on Thursday.

The 1.2 MW plant will provide 25 percent of the mall's energy needs, a way to ease the power shortage in Puerto Princesa. It is also expected to offset an estimated 40,000 tons of CO2.

Palawan is the largest island in the country not serviced by the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines, due to its location. This means consumers have to pay among the highest power rates in the country for diesel-powered generation.

Robinsons Solar Plant is expected to earn a payback of just 5 1/2 years for an investment to last over 25 years.

"The days of having to choose between business and the environment are over. Solar has gained the reputation of being expensive only because previous efforts were too small to benefit from economies of scale. By building the country’s largest projects, we've become the first local company to make solar cost-competitive with fossil fuel, and this is most of all true in Palawan," said Leviste.

Robinsons Land financed the project and selected Solar Philippines as the contractor in a bidding process.

Solar Philippines has also recently completed a project on CityMall Roxas in Panay Island, the country’s first solar mall outside Luzon.