ALTERNERGY Holdings Corp. said on Wednesday that its unit secured a service contract from the Energy department for exclusive rights to explore, develop, and utilize wind resources in Calavite Passage, Occidental Mindoro.

“We believe that offshore wind will play very crucial role in the Philippines energy supply security in the medium term, and a key priority of the current administration,” Alternergy Chairman Vicente S. Pérez, Jr. said in a press release.

The wind energy service contract was between the Department of Energy (DoE) and Pililla AVPC Corp. for a project Mr. Pérez described as “situated within one of the six zones identified by the World Bank with high offshore wind potential.”

Following the DoE approval of the contract, the Calavite Passage offshore wind project will conduct technical studies and resource assessments. The project covers 78,000 hectares between northwest Mindoro and Lubang Island.

Alternergy said that the project would boost the DoE’s target for renewable energy (RE) to have a 35% share in the country’s energy mix by 2030 and a 50% share by 2040.

Mr. Pérez said that while offshore wind is a “nascent industry,” there is a growing interest in it from different stakeholders.

“At the present, the development of offshore wind projects could be quite challenging. But we are committed to pioneer this technology in the country,” he said.

Northern Mindoro is said to have an offshore wind potential capacity of 5 gigawatts, and the estimated average wind speed in the area is more than 11 meters per second.

Alternergy said that the Calavite Passage offshore wind project forms part of its goal of building 1,245 megawatts of renewable energy capacity in the next five years. — Ashley Erika O. Jose