‘First come, first served’ policy for RE projects

Allocation scheme seen to weed out speculators


11:34 PM February 12th, 2013

By: Amy R. Remo, February 12th, 2013 11:34 PM

The Department of Energy is adopting a “first come, first served” policy in allocating the limited 760-megawatt installation target for renewable energy (RE) projects, eliciting a mix of disbelief and support among local developers.

Energy Secretary Carlos Jericho Petilla said this policy meant that renewable energy developers must take the risk of building the power plant first before securing from the government an allocation from the installation target for their projects.

The first developers to build their facilities and pass the criteria upon checking by the DOE would be qualified under the installation target, which refers to the total capacity of renewable energy projects that will be allowed to be constructed within a three-year period. This also means that their projects can get the feed-in-tariff (FIT) rates, which will assure developers of fixed cashflow over a 20-year period.

Under the current installation target, 250 MW has been allocated for hydropower projects, 250 MW for biomass, 50 MW for solar, 200 MW for wind power and 10 MW for ocean power.

According to Petilla, the new policy would help weed out the speculators from the more serious energy players, although he admitted that it might give an undue, default advantage to the bigger power players, which might have more expertise and financial muscle to execute their projects.

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