Quezon City

Quezon City plans to make city-owned buildings solar-powered 

James Patrick Cruz

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Quezon City plans to make city-owned buildings solar-powered 

SOLAR-POWERED. The Quezon City government installs solar panels to its buildings.

Quezon City Government/Facebook

Quezon City Hall installs solar panels to three of its buildings, and plans to make all city-owned structures solar-powered

MANILA, Philippines – Three buildings in the Quezon City Hall complex are now solar-powered, marking a significant step toward the city’s goal of making all its structures energy self-sufficient.

“In QC we aim to prioritize reducing energy demand through efficient building solutions and transitioning to renewable energy sources in all of our city-owned infrastructures,” Mayor Joy Belmonte said in a statement released on Monday, June 17.

In the 15-floor high-rise Main Building, a total of 180 panels were installed, 108 panels in the Legislative Building and about 290 panels in the Treasury Building. 

With these solar panels, Quezon City can save up to around P1.5 million yearly in electrical expenses which could be used to maintain and rehabilitate six daycare centers or four healthcare centers yearly,  City Engineer Dale Perral said. This initiative is also expected to reduce the city’s carbon footprint by 125 tons. 

The solar panels could also be revenue-generating as Perral said that unused energy or excess supply can be sold to Meralco.

The city plans to install over 1,000 solar panels in other city-owned hospitals and schools. Target hospitals include Rosario Maclang Bautista General Hospital, Novaliches District Hospital, and Quezon City General Hospital.

Meanwhile, the schools slated for solar panel installations were Culiat Elementary School, Culiat High School, Judge Feliciano Belmonte Sr. High School, New Era High School, and Tandang Sora Elementary School.

Quezon City’s solar energy transition is funded by the United Kingdom government’s Urban Climate Action Programme, launched in 2021.

In collaboration with Meralco, the Quezon City government plans to open a dedicated service center at the city hall, making it easier for residents to apply for solar energy adoption and net-metering.

The move towards solar energy comes amid electricity supply challenges nationwide.

In April, the Department of Energy advised Filipinos to limit the use of high-energy-consuming devices, such as air conditioners and elevators because of supply problems. This precautionary measure followed a wave of class suspensions due to excessive heat experienced in the same month.

The Quezon City local government is also urging the private sector to comply with and support the City’s Green Building Ordinance, contributing to the development of a greener, more sustainable urban environment.

Quezon City has been proactive in promoting green policies. In 2019, Belmonte signed an ordinance which bans single-use plastics in hotels, restaurants, and other similar establishments in the city. 

In partnership with Greenpeace, the Quezon City government also launched the “Kuha sa Tingi” program in July 2023. This livelihood initiative offers consumers affordable and convenient alternatives to sacheted products through simple reuse and refill systems in sari-sari stores. Belmonte said that they plan to expand the campaign to 1,000 stores. 

Quezon City is at the forefront of active transport with its progressive bike policies and infrastructure. In the 2023 Mobility Awards, it earned the title of the most bicycle-friendly city, achieving a “gold rating.” – Rappler.com

On Rappler, we have created a dedicated space for stories and reports about liveability in Philippine cities. Learn more about the #MakeManilaLiveable movement here.

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James Patrick Cruz

Patrick Cruz is a researcher and writer for Rappler’s governance cluster. Before transferring to Rappler's Research team, he covered local governments focusing on Metro Manila.