THE Department of Energy (DoE) said it will further encourage energy efficiency and conservation by creating a committee that will formulate the guidelines for the accreditation of energy service companies, or ESCOs.

In a department order, Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi created a panel to be led by the assistant director of the Energy Utilization Management Bureau (EUMB) as the chair of accreditation committee.

“The Committee shall formulate the guidelines on the accreditation of ESCOs which shall be subject to approval of the Secretary,” he said.

“The Committee shall conduct the accreditation process based on the approved accreditation guidelines and shall endorse to the Secretary, through the Director of EUMB, the application, as evaluated, for approval and issuance of Certificates,” he added.

The members of the panel are the division chiefs of the DoE’s general legal services, power compliance, and energy efficiency and conservation division, along with the section chief of the energy management advisory service sector.

Sought for details on DO2019-07-0013, the DoE communications department said the order was “modified and enhanced” by Section 13 of Republic Act No. 11285 or “An Act Institutionalizing Energy Efficiency and Conservation, Enhancing the Efficient Use of Energy, and Granting Incentives to Energy Efficiency and Conservation Projects.”

Among others, the law authorizes the DoE to strengthen the existing ESCO certification system.

“There are currently consultations with stakeholders on the draft EE&C [energy efficiency and conservation] IRR [implementing rules and regulations], particularly of those DoE-accredited ESCOs,” the DoE said. “To date, IRR development is still on-going.”

The DoE also clarified that there is no need for existing ESCOs to apply for the renewal of their accreditation unless it expires on or before the date of issuance of the guidelines.

Alexander Ablaza, president of the Philippine Energy Efficiency Alliance, Inc. (PE2), said his group was preparing an industry position on the accreditation guidelines and other “thematic areas” relating to the IRR.

“And we hope to have an industry position on the entire IRR by month-end, at the earliest,” he said.

PE2 has recently re-organized its policy committee, the composition of which was relayed to the DoE. The alliance is a non-stock, non-profit organization of energy efficiency market stake-holders. — Victor V. Saulon