The Department of Energy said Tuesday the country needs to build 52,826 megawatts of new renewable energy (RE) projects to meet the 50-percent mix by 2040.
Energy Undersecretary Rowena Guevara said accelerating RE development is the government’s priority towards a sustainable and low-carbon energy future as written in the National Renewable Energy Program and Philippine Energy Plan 2020-2040.
Guevara said this meant increasing the 22-percent RE gross generation today and hitting 50 percent by 2040 which would require the cooperation of all stakeholders.
“This will primarily be comprised of solar at 27,000 MW, wind at 16,600 MW, hydro at 6,000 MW, geothermal at 2,500 MW and biomass at 360 MW,” Guevara said.
Guevara said offshore wind projects would also help meet the country’s RE targets.
The DOE awarded 78 OSW energy service contracts with a potential capacity of 61.6 GW as of September 2023.
“This is 180 percent of our current generation capacity. If all these potential capacity is realized, the country’s per capita power consumption will finally be comparable with our ASEAN neighbors,” she said.
Guevara said bringing wind developers from service contract award to generating the first kilowatt-hour is a long process.
“We still have to work out possessory rights, environmental compliance, avoiding marine protected areas, sea lanes, etc. But we have already started the conversation with permitting agencies, industry organizations and our offshore wind energy service contract awardees,” she said.
Guevara said the DOE put in place various policies and market-driven mechanisms to progressively develop and implement more RE projects all over the country.
The department established the competitive RE zones (CREZ) and identified 25 strategic areas with the highest concentration of wind and solar resources.
Initial results indicated that the Philippines has a total potential capacity of 58,110 MW solar PV and 93,987 MW wind energy.
Other RE zones for geothermal hydropower and biomass development were identified with a total potential capacity of 655,773 MW all over the country.
“The recent policy allowing 100-percent foreign ownership in the implementation of RE projects has encouraged foreign developers to invest in the Philippines,” Guevara said.
She said the Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards which mandate load-serving entities to source a minimum percentage of RE in their respective power supply portfolios was increased from 1 percent to 2.52 percent.
“We also have the Green Energy Option Program [GEOP], a voluntary and non-regulated policy mechanism that allows end-users with a demand of 100kW and above, to source their electricity supply from RE resources through RE Suppliers,” she said.
Guevara said the DOE was also preparing for the Green Energy Auction Program Round 3 where geothermal, run-of-river hydro and impounding hydro will be auctioned in the fourth quarter of this year.
“Next year, we plan to hold GEA-4 that includes offshore wind,” she said.