June 10, 2021: Philippine power company SMC (San Miguel Corporation) has signed agreements with major energy storage firms to provide up to 1GW of storage for the archipelago, including 470MW from Fluence and 220MW from ABB, the firms have just announced.
Fluence on June 9 said it had completed the commissioning of two 20MW/20MWh battery storage systems in a first wave of its portfolio that will eventually provide 470MW/470MWh across 13 sites across the islands.
It builds on the first 10MW/10MWh battery installed at Zambales, which Fluence says ‘served as both a proof of concept and a template for the development of subsequent energy storage assets across the Philippine grid’.
The rest of the systems will be in place by the end of July 2022, the company says.
In another agreement announced on June 4, Swiss technology giant ABB will work with SMC to install seven battery systems across the islands.
The systems will have a total capacity of 220MW, 80MW of which will be installed this year, the rest in 2022, the announcement said.
Five of the battery systems will be installed on the island of Luzon, the largest of the Philippine islands and also home to the capital, Manila.
“The region will benefit from BESS as part of the government’s ‘Build, build, build’ programme that aims to establish a ‘golden age of infrastructure’ to boost industry and tourism,” a statement said.
The Philippines is no stranger to power cuts, suffering outages year after year at times of high temperatures.
On June 1, the local newspaper The Manila Times reported that the island grid had been placed on yellow and red alerts, with rotating brown-outs lasting up to an hour affecting parts of the island.
Quoting data from the NGCP (National Grid Corporation of the Philippines), the paper said available capacity was at 11,729MW but demand was projected to peak at 11,514MW, leaving a buffer of just over 200MW.