Philippines has over 170 GW of untapped offshore wind potential

Danessa Rivera (The Philippine Star) - June 23, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines has over 170 gigawatts (GW) of untapped offshore wind potential, according to the World Bank Group which is assisting the Department of Energy in coming up with the country’s offshore wind roadmap.

World Bank Offshore Wind Development Program co-lead Mark Leybourne assured the DOE on the delivery of a “robust, independent, and practical assessment of the possible ways forward for offshore wind in the Philippines.”

Last month, The STAR reported that the DOE partnered with the World Bank Group and the UK Embassy to develop specific policies and regulations for offshore wind projects as it looks to further develop renewable energy (RE) technologies in the country.

The offshore wind roadmap project will be funded through the World Bank’s Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP).

The Philippine Offshore Wind Roadmap is among the series of offshore wind roadmap studies commissioned by the World Bank under the joint ESMAP-International Finance Corporation Offshore Wind Development Program.

DOE Secretary Alfonso Cusi said the World Bank’s support would help the Philippines bolster the development and utilization of wind energy.

“As the country actively pursues the energy transition, broadening our offshore wind prospects would help fast-track meeting our goal of attaining a 35 percent renewable energy (RE) share in our energy mix by the year 2030. This project is another key milestone for the energy sector as we continue to deepen our ability to harness the country’s vast RE resources,” he said.

The project aims to identify areas in the Philippines with high potential for offshre wind development; establish short and long-term offshore wind targets; formulate strategies to successfully integrate offshore wind in the government’s renewable energy (RE) portfolio; and put forth recommendations on policies that are necessary to foster a conducive business environment for offshore wind investors.

The World Bank commissioned BVG Associates (BVGA) to explore the technical, economic, environmental, social, employment, and financing aspects of establishing an offshore wind market in the Philippines.

So far, the DOE has awarded five wind energy service contracts, namely the Guimaras Strait Wind Power Project (WPP), Aparri Bay WPP, Guimaras Strait II Wind Project, Frontera Bay WPP, and San Miguel Bay WPP, which have a combined potential capacity of five GW from offshore wind.

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