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PHL reforms pushing renewable power growth, Bloomberg research arm says

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THE PHILIPPINES has achieved a “turnaround” in sourcing power from renewable sources with policy innovations that have helped bring down the cost, putting the country sixth among developing nations in the Climatescope 2018 ranking compiled by Bloomberg New Energy Finance Ltd. (BNEF).

The Philippines scored 2.29 points, enough for sixth on the rankings, amid surging electricity demand, decreasing technology costs, and innovative laws.

“It’s been quite a turnaround. Just a few years ago, some argued that less developed nations could not, or even should not, expand power generation with zero-carbon sources because these were too expensive. Today, these countries are leading the charge when it comes to deployment, investment, policy innovation and cost reductions,” said Dario Traum, senior associate of BNEF and project manager of Climatescope in a statement Tuesday.

BNEF said reforms introduced by the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA), or Republic Act 9136, and the Renewable Energy Act (RE), or RA 9513, fueled the growth of the renewable energy sector.

In September, the Department of Energy also issued a circular detailing its intent to identify competitive renewable energy zones (CREZ), where renewable sources are deemed feasible for development.

The government has also moved to give energy developers the right to sign power supply agreements (PSAs) directly with customers. Meanwhile, the Green Energy Option program authorizes utilities to supply customers opting for renewable energy.




BNEF also noted the country’s target for renewable capacity of 15.3 gigawatts (GW) by 2030.

BNEF said the negatives include targets to increase coal energy capacity by up to five times the current level. It said that while additins to coal-fired capacity fell to their lowest levels in over a decade in 2017, actual power generated by coal plants rose 4% year-on-year.

The top five in the BNEF ranking were Chile at 2.63 points, India (2.57), Jordan (2.54), Brazil (2.52), and Rwanda (2.31). China, which claimed the top spot last year, finished seventh. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang