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DOE plans 5,501 MW power capacity addition

The Department of Energy (DOE) is eyeing 5,501 megawatts of power capacity that will be added into the country’s electricity supply in the next five years, according to data culled from the agency.

Bulk of the targeted new capacity are eyed for installations in the next two years, to underpin the anticipated rebound of the economy from the affliction of the coronavirus pandemic.

In the ongoing review of the Philippine Energy Plan, it has been cast that the greenfield capacity expected to take off this 2020 was for 2,991MW, but since most project implementations are being stalled by the health crisis, it is seen that the concretization of these ventures will be moved to a later date.

In the succeeding years, the additional capacities being set on blueprints are: 891MW in 2021; 287MW in 2022; 290MW in 2023; 600MW in 2024; and 442MW in 2025.

As a matter of fact, the DOE noted that the aggregate capacity of indicative power projects hovers at 22,824MW; but most of these proposed facilities do not have specific details yet on how they will advance to implementation phases.

“These power generation projects are still on the process of acquiring various permits, approvals and licenses and may not have a definite timeline for commercial operation,” the DOE stressed.

Of the next batch of power projects, it was emphasized that these will likely be dominated by coal technology; followed by natural gas; then hydropower developments as well as other renewable energy installations.

For this year, the most immediate power projects anticipated by the DOE to take off from the drawing board are the 1,800MW that shall be the subject of competitive selection process (CSP) by the Manila Electric Company.

Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi previously told the utility firm that he is not inclined at delaying the CSP activity for that targeted capacity addition, thus, he urged Meralco to explore options on how it can undertake the power supply agreements (PSAs) bidding even if the pandemic still lingers.

The CSP terms approved for Meralco is to carry out the tender on a technology agnostic approach, hence, the capacity that could be cornered for that power supply shoring up could either be from fossil fuels like coal or gas; or it could also be from RE technologies.

The 1,800MW capacity to be auctioned by Meralco will cater to its need for additional capacity by year 2024 – the new timeframe on when Luzon grid’s power supply may already experience another round of tightening.

Nevertheless, energy planners are re-assessing how the impact of the health plague would further weigh down on the economy, because if the recovery will take longer, the requirement for new power capacity may also be stretched by additional 1-2 years.

Source: Manila Bulletin (

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