Solar energy is a sustainable energy, as it comes from a renewable resource. By converting the sun’s energy into electrical energy, solar panels make use of the most sustainable resource on the planet – the light of the sun.
Solar Philippines Founder, President and CEO Leandro Leviste was only 20 years old when he was investing into Tesla and Solar City, both U.S. companies that specialize in manufacturing solar panels. It was in between his second and third years studying politics in Yale, that he spotted an opportunity back home, as electricity rates in the Philippines are among the highest in Asia. And he was convinced that solar power could bring it down.
With the mission of lowering the electricity costs to improve the lives of Filipinos, Solar Philippines started by helping out large businesses to lower their costs, so they can pass on those savings to their tenants and customers. With that, Leandro started on a sustainable path towards a better and greener Philippines.
Leandro brought the idea to SM Prime Holdings though Mr. Hans T. Sy, “who had taken quite an interest in SM being the first to adopt solar for the consumption of commercial buildings in the Philippines.”
Mr. Sy believed in the idea, and soon “SM worked very hard with its engineering team customizing the parking lot installation and making sure that the construction of both the parking lot expansion and the solar panel installation were on schedule,” Lean says.
In 2014, Solar Philippines completed the solar panel rooftop installation in SM City North EDSA which has 5,760 solar panels installed, that was at that time the largest solar powered rooftop installation on a mall, not just in the Philippines, but in the world.
To date, Solar Philippines already completed the installation of solar panels in 8 SM Malls including SM City North EDSA, SM Mall of Asia, SM City Iloilo, SM City Cauayan, SM City Cabanatuan, SM City Trece Martires, SM Center Tuguegarao Downtown, and SM Seaside City Cebu.
Leandro is thankful that with these “pioneering projects, solar has now become part of the mainstream consciousness of the Philippines and is well on its way to becoming a common feature of every Filipino household.”
He adds that, “our partnership has not only benefited our business, but also the rest of the country as SM’s adoption of new green technologies will create a more sustainable development for Filipinos.”
As his company continues to grow, Leandro looks forward to “the time that every Filipino will enjoy the benefits of solar energy, whether from their own rooftops or from the electric power grid because of the decreasing cost of solar energy.” He adds that these decreasing costs will not only lead to lower prices, but also to a better and greener Philippines.