DOE bares priorities for 2023

Richmond Mercurio - The Philippine Star
DOE bares priorities for 2023
“For the critical periods in 2023, which include summer, the DOE will pursue contingency measures and activities such as the preparation for the Malampaya scheduled maintenance in February,” the agency said.
STAR / File

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Energy (DOE) has bared its key priorities for this year, foremost of which is pursuing contingency measures and activities to ensure energy supply during critical periods, including the summer months.

“For the critical periods in 2023, which include summer, the DOE will pursue contingency measures and activities such as the preparation for the Malampaya scheduled maintenance in February,” the agency said.

The agency had earlier expressed concern about supply in the summer months of 2023, when thin power reserves will be met with higher demand.

As the oversight agency for the sector, the DOE said it would seek to ensure that committed power projects, transmission line facilities and liquefied natural gas (LNG) infrastructure, among others, are completed and delivered on time.

It cited the Mindanao-Visayas Interconnection Project, the Cebu-Negros-Panay Backbone Project and the Hermosa-San Jose Transmission Line in Bataan as among the critical transmission projects that will support the entry of around 711.54 megawatts of additional renewable energy capacity and 1,120-MW battery energy storage system in Luzon grid.

Toward the first half of 2023, the DOE said it would continue to keep a tight watch on the commercial operation of LNG facilities that would complement the Malampaya resource.

The agency said six applications for LNG import terminal projects were already approved as of December 2022.

Two LNG projects, which are expected to become operational within the first half, will supply the existing anchor markets of the Malampaya gas field to address the impending depletion of the country’s lone domestic source of natural gas.

Meanwhile, the DOE said other key priorities of the agency for the year include updating the Philippine Energy Plan to align with the Philippine Development Plan, as well as formulating the National Total Electrification Roadmap, the Energy Resiliency Roadmap and Action Plan, and Energy Resilience Scorecard and Assessment.

The agency also intends to formulate a Nuclear Power Roadmap, in partnership with the private sector, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), experts and stakeholders.

“The government shall explore the possibility of developing small-scale modular nuclear power plant or its derivatives, subject to compliance with safety standards and regulations of the IAEA,” the DOE said.

The agency said the existing Nuclear Power Roadmap would be updated to guide both the Nuclear Energy Program Implementing Organization and the Nuclear Energy Program Inter-Agency Committee in the implementation of activities to address the challenges of the nuclear energy program.

It said the current roadmap is comprised of phases, bounded by timelines, and covers both soft and hard infrastructures.

Further, the DOE said it would conduct the second round of the Green Energy Auction Program this year to accelerate renewable energy development and deployment.

Essential policy frameworks for emerging renewable energy technologies such as offshore wind and hydrogen will also be continuously developed.

The DOE also intends to reassess previous policy issuances and the promulgation of a more refined competitive selection process policy to address the delays and improve the slow pace of distribution utilities’ compliance on competitive power supply contracting.

“As such, the necessary power supply contracting mechanisms will be in place, enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of the policy. Similarly, the department will swiftly push to strengthen its implementation to institutionalize transparency and good governance in the awarding of power supply contracts,” the DOE said.

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