Assessing the Impact of IMPHORAA
During February 2023, the IMPHORAA consortium travelled to Port Silanguin in order to assess the installation sites and meet with the locals. These installation sites are remote villages that span across the coast were the locals live. Figure 1 below shows an example of such a village.
These villages are mainly occupied by local fishermen and their families, who obtain their meals and livelihoods from fishing on local coasts. The fish needs to be refrigerated but a lack of electricity and appliances make this challenging. The locals improvise by using blocks of ice that they purchase from nearby towns (closest of which is Subic Bay which takes a total of 5 hours). Figure 2 shows the boats used for fishing and Figure 3 shows how the local residents currently refrigerate their catches.
The IMPHORRA consortium members had the chance to meet with the locals and understand their needs. They were quite enthusiastic at the prospect of electrification or their villages, it would significantly improve their quality of life.
John Defensor of Quantum Leap Marketing has given some insight on the matter, “Port Silanguin is an isolated island with no road network, no electricity, no potable water system – the perfect place for a solar nanogrid. It is 33 kilometres away from mainland Zambales and travel time by boat is about two to 2.5 hours each way, costing P250. Its inhabitants are mostly fisher folk, who spend about P800 to P1,200 for a block of ice.”
This trip gave the consortium a chance to see exactly what the local people need and to learn how to provide the services required to improve their quality of life in a major way.
This project is supported by Innovate UKs Energy Catalyst Programme (funding by the Foreign, Commonwealth Development Office through their Transforming Energy Access Programme) and UK aid and was awarded as a “subsidy” under the UK International Obligations for Subsidy Control and delivered under Grant 90935 from Innovate UK