PhilCarbon Surveying Bulalacao For Wind Turbines
Image courtesy Martyn Willes
During the month of March, PhilCarbon has had a team of engineers in the field (literally) surveying for sites for Mindoro’s first wind farm in Bulalacao. An estimated 20MW wind power capacity may be installed in 2014 if the famous Bulalacao breezes check out.
Twenty sites are being surveyed in Bulalacao from which three will be chosen for a eighteen month wind analysis. A anemometer will be installed at the three best sites and the analysis of the wind data will dictate how many wind turbines can potentially be installed. According to Bulalacao Mayor Villas, “the wind turbines will be one of two renewable energy resources for Bulalacao . . . we are also seeking funding for a small hydro electric plant in one upstream location.”
Mayor Villas, an engineer by profession, has been a pioneer in community development projects that are designed to have the least impact on the environment at the same time as generating the maximum income benefits for his people. Other projects include the Bulalacao Technical Training College and the promotion of Bulalacao as a prime scuba diving, kayaking and wind sports destination (sailing, windsurfing and kiteboarding).
The technical college has trained 240 welders in the past two years of which 60 have found employment overseas. As Mayor Villas asserts, “these welders now remit their earnings to their families here improving lives without draining resources”.
The subject of tourism development is more challenging. For example: scuba divers need to have their tanks refilled and the nearest refilling stations are in far–away Puerto Galera and San Jose. If Bulalacao generates funding to install a scuba tank refilling station then the scuba divers will come. The mayor is currently seeking funding for a tank refilling station that will enable divers from Puerto Galera, San Jose and Boracay (less than two hours away by boat) to more easily come and explore the largely uncharted corals and wrecks around Bulalacao. He is convinced that once the scuba divers experience the excellent water clarity and wide variety of marine life in Bulalacao then the resort dive shops will come and the number of resort rooms will grow to accommodate the influx of tourists. This will generate income for the community through increased employment opportunities and consumption of local produce.
Bulalacao is famous for rice (delicious long–grain rice, that actually tastes like rice), garlic, onions, egg-plant, succulent native–tomatoes & peppers, and a wide variety of seafood.
Bulalacao is uniquely located at the apex of the Boracay–Mindoro–Palawan Triangle and offers superb infrastructure to enable tourism growth. Consider this, since the recent completion of a concrete road from the North to the West of Mindoro: the journey time North to Calapan (with connecting ferry services to Batangas) and Puerto Galera has been cut from twelve hours to around four; an air–conditioned bus service is now running daily from Metro Manila to Bulalacao; the journey time West to San Jose airport has been cut from five hours to just one hour!; there is already air–conditioned transport direct from San Jose airport to Bulalacao, that meets all incoming flights from Manila; and, a Ro–Ro (roll–on–roll–off ferry) port is now complete and ready to accept vehicle / passenger ferries from Palawan and Boracay.
Mayor Villas has done an outstanding job in preparing the infrastructure of Bulalacao for the coming decades of tourism, all that is now required is to get the first few social–network–connected scuba divers to come and explore the thirteen islands & the miles of white sand beaches, and to “like” and tell their friends.
By 2014, when the waves of tourists are already washing Bulalacao’s shores, the PhilCarbon wind turbines will start providing clean power to keep the air–conditioners running, without power interruption.
If you have not yet visited Bulalacao then now would be a good time to come and explore its thirteen islands, still pristine and many of them are just like mini–Boracays . . . as Boracay was in the 1970s – virgin.
Note: If you need mobile communications through cellular networks when you travel then you need to know that most of Bulalacao does not enjoy good Globe signal.
To discover more about Bulalacao visit the Travel Bulalacao website