THE Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) said that it is planning to release the regulatory framework for the green energy option program (GEOP) by late April.

“End of April. It will be promulgated by the Commission,” ERC Commissioner-in-Charge Floresinda G. Baldo-Digal told BusinessWorld in a mobile message Wednesday.

Renewable Energy Management Bureau Director Mylene C. Capongcol has said that the bureau is still waiting for the ERC to issue the rules governing GEOP, a program launched in 2018 which allows large consumers using 100 kilowatts or more to select eligible renewable energy (RE) providers to supply their power needs.

“We’re still waiting for the Energy Regulatory’s (ERC’s) framework, particularly in setting the technical and interconnection standards as well as wheeling fees,” Ms. Capongcol said Wednesday during a webinar hosted by non-governmental organization Center for Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technology.

Authorized by the implementing rules and regulations of the Renewable Energy Act of 2008, the commission is required to issue a regulatory framework to “effect and achieve the objectives of the GEOP.”

Ms. Capongcol said at the webinar that the program is for end-users prepared to “totally migrate” to sourcing power from RE resources.

Asked whether GEOP participants will be allowed to switch back to their previous arrangements with distribution utilities, Ms. Capongcol said that they can do so any time as long as they settle all their obligations.

“As long as they meet or comply with the… financial obligations from the distribution utility or the RE supplier, then the switching can be done so they can go back and forth,” she said.

In January, the Department of Energy announced that six suppliers, including members of the Aboitiz and Ayala groups, were admitted into the GEOP. The companies were part of the first batch that filed for GEOP operating permits.

Ms. Capongcol said that the six permit holders are “already marketing their services to the Philippine Economic Zone Authority and some commercial establishments.” — Angelica Y. Yang