THE Department of Energy (DoE) said on Wednesday that on-grid power suppliers must expand the share of renewable energy (RE) in their output to 2.52% by next year, from the current 1%, for them to remain compliant with the requirements of the renewable portfolio standards (RPS) program.

In a statement, the DoE said the order applies to power distribution utilities and electric cooperatives, which under the law must raise their RE sourcing by 1 percentage point a year between 2020 and 2030.

“The increase in the utilization of renewable energy in our power generation mix would encourage more investors and end-users to develop and utilize domestic energy sources,” Energy Secretary Raphael P.M. Lotilla said.

The RPS is a component of the Renewable Energy Act of 2008 designed to encourage greater use of RE.

To date, the DoE said it has issued 998 renewable energy contracts with a combined installed capacity of 5,460.59 megawatts (MW) and potential capacity of 61,613.81 MW. The contracts have the potential to generate P270.78 billion worth of investment for awarded and prospective deals. 

Solar accounted for P130.44 billion of prospective investment, with installed capacity of around 1,386.506 MW; wind P52.91 billion and 409.900 MW; hydropower P38.73 billion and 269.29 MW; biomass P38.16 billion and 634.91 MW and geothermal P10.54 billion and 82.50 MW.

“Private sector investment is central in achieving our renewable energy targets and vision. To date, the share of renewable energy in the power generation mix is 22%,” Mr. Lotilla said.  

According to the DoE’s National Renewable Energy program, the department hopes to increase the share of renewables in the power mix to 35% by 2030 and to 50% by 2040.

“By increasing the annual percentage over time, renewable energy will drive us down a path towards energy sustainability,” Mr. Lotilla said. — Ashley Erika O. Jose