Philippines eyes raising megawatts for wind energy projects

The National Renewable Energy Board say raising installation targets for wind energy projects to 500 megawatts will help ease the summer power crisis in 2015.


Not many are interested in the idea, however, according to NREB member and Energy Development Corporation (EDC) executive vice president Ernesto Pantangco.

“As NREB, we are proposing an increase in wind allocation. It’s 300 MW. So, it’s going to be 500 MW,” Pantangco said on Wednesday, October 8.

NREB is the body tasked by the Renewable Energy Act of 2008 to recommend policies, rules, and standards to govern the implementation of the law that grants fiscal and non-fiscal incentives to renewable energy projects.

He said they are trying to have a meeting with Energy Secretary Carlos Jericho Petilla to present their proposal.

NREB Chairman Pedro Maniego Jr said previously that the wind installation target of 200 MW is expected to be exceeded by December 2014.

“The total wind projects on the pipeline exceed 700 MW and can be finished by 2015. The cost per kWh is lower than mid-merit and spot market rates,” Maniego said.

The Ayala, Trans-Asia, Nabas, and Burgos projects are lined up for wind projects, Pantangco said. EDC of the Lopez group is currently constructing the 87 MW Burgos wind farm in Ilocos Norte.

Trans-Asia Petroluem of the Phinma group, meanwhile, is developing a 54 MW wind power project in Guimaras.

Ayala-controlled NorthWind Power Development Corporation is pursuing the 3rd phase expansion of the largest wind farm in Southeast Asia, the Bangui Bay wind farm in Ilocos Norte, by adding 18 MW to its existing 33 MW.


Increasing the installation targets for renewable energy projects is meant to entice developers to put up more projects to boost supply during the summer months. Wind installation will help alleviate power shortage in 2015 to 2016 at lower costs versus generation sets and ILP (Interruptible Load Program), said Maniego.

The Department of Energy (DOE) initially set the installation cap at 750 MW, divided among run-of-river hydro with 250 MW; biomass, 250 MW; wind, 200 MW; and solar, 50 MW. The installation target for solar was already adjusted to 500 MW.

These targets are necessary for each type of renewable energy that will qualify for FIT (feed-in tariff) incentives. FIT is the per kilowatt-hour rate guaranteed to renewable energy developers to ensure their projects’ viability. Consumers will shoulder the tariff through a new line item in their electricity bills.

The targets would also ensure the security of the power grid and electricity rates, given the intermittent and high cost of power generation from such renewable energy sources compared with conventional plants.

The Energy Regulatory Commission has approved the FIT rates: P9.68 ($0.22) per kilowatt-hour for solar; P8.53 ($0.19) per kWh for wind; P6.63 ($0.15) per kWh for biomass; and P5.90 ($ 0.13) per kWh for hydropower projects.