DOE concludes virtual 'green energy' public consultations

The Department of Energy (DOE) has concluded public consultations on two proposed policies aimed at increasing the renewable energy (RE) share in the country’s generation mix to 35 percent by 2030 and further to 50 percent by 2040.

The twin draft circulars—“Providing the Guidelines for the Green Energy Auction Program [GEAP] in the Philippines and “Amending Section 13 [E] and Section 18 [C] of Department Circular DC2009-05-0008 entitled, Implementing Rules and Regulations of Republic Act [RA] 9513”—are expected to facilitate increase investment in the RE capacities through a level-playing field that would result to attainment of transparent and competitive rates.

Under the GEAP, renewable energy (RE) developers will offer their capacity to consumers and to the distribution utilities (DUs) that are required to purchase RE as mandated by the RPS (Renewable Portfolio Standards).

The purpose of the new guidelines on GEAP is to provide immediate and timely investments, support the development of, and increase access to financing for new or additional capacities under a competitive process, as well as implement programs that promotes clean and sustainable environment.  The DOE, through the GEAP Committee, aims to conduct the first round bid in October.

“One of the things that we’ve discussed within the DOE is actually try to improve on the GEAP to hit our targets using existing mechanisms that will increase the share of RE in the market, increase the available supply of power in the grid, and at the same time will increase the RPS allocation of the DUs,” said GEAP Committee Chairman and DOE Assistant Secretary Redentor Delola in a news statement.

Separately, Delola said, the agency is now finalizing the policy based on the comments received from industry stakeholders. “Hopefully, we will be able to promulgate it by end of August. Then, we will be issuing the Notice of Auction,” he said in a text message.

The other draft DC on RA 9513 IRR Amendments is meant to address the long-standing outstanding concerns raised by RE developers and fabricators, manufacturers, and other target recipients on the implementation of  the tax provisions, especially on the automatic availment of the 10-percent Corporate Income Tax and Zero-Rate VAT, as well as other incentives in the RE Law. Moreover, ensuring that all fiscal incentives are properly availed of through an efficient government process.

“As the need for RE increases, we ardently continue to pursue our RE initiatives in achieving a Clean Energy Scenario. I am confident that the enhanced GEAP guidelines and amendments will further bring us closer to our goal,” said Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi.

The public consultations were held virtually last August 5 and 6, 2021 for Luzon-Visayas leg and Mindanao leg, respectively. The conduct of the public consultation was made possible with the assistance of the United States Agency for International Development-Energy Secure Philippines (USAID-ESP).

This article was originally published by Business Mirror.