New investment in RE tops P221 billion

PHILSTAR

NEW renewable energy (RE) investment between 2009 and 2020 amounted to P221.35 billion, the Department of Energy (DoE) said Wednesday, noting a growing interest in clean power since the enactment of the RE Law.

“Between 2009 to 2020, we saw the addition of about 2,339 MW (megawatts) of RE capacity installations which translate to estimated total investments of P221.35 billion,” Senior Undersecretary Jesus Cristino P. Posadas said in a virtual event Wednesday.

The DoE estimates total RE installed capacity of 7,617 MW as of the end of 2020, with 3,779 MW of the total consisting of hydro.

The Energy department targets a renewable share of 35% of the power mix by 2030, and 50% by 2040.

Mr. Posadas also noted that the DoE has declared a moratorium on greenfield coal-fired plants and eased foreign ownership restrictions on the development of geothermal and biomass projects.

“We allowed the full participation of foreign firms in large-scale geothermal projects which have (an) initial investment capitalization of about $50 million for financial and technical assistance agreements. Biomass projects including waste to energy are likewise open to 100% foreign ownership,” he said, referring to the department’s decision to do away with the 60-40% ownership rule in favor of Filipinos.

He said the RE Act of 2008 has led to substantial growth in interest in RE, steered by the department’s mandatory and voluntary market development support mechanisms in favor of renewables.

Some of these mechanisms include the renewable energy portfolio standards which require power providers to source a portion of clean energy from eligible RE facilities; the green energy option program which gives qualified end-users the choice to source power from RE through accredited entities; and the net metering program, which encourages power consumers to generate their own electricity through RE facilities with a capacity of up to 100 kilowatts. — Angelica Y. Yang