The share of renewable energy (RE) in the country’s generation mix has gone down to 21 percent in 2019, from 23.38 percent in 2018, the advisory body tasked to draft policies on RE said Monday.
In a virtual forum on RE, the chairman of the National Renewable Energy Board (NREB) said the RE’s share in the supply mix keeps on “dwindling.”
In 2014 and 2015, RE’s share in the supply generation mix stood at the 25-percent level. It fell to 24.21 percent in 2016 and slightly increased to 24.57 percent in 2017. In 2018, it declined to 23.38 percent.
NREB data from 2014 to 2018, coal dominated the mix. It recorded the highest share in 2018 at 52.05 percent.
“In 2014, renewable energy was at 25.6 percent. Recall that when we started, when the RE Act was passed, we were already at 35 to 40 percent of the mix. In 2014, five or six years from the law was passed, we were down to 25 percent. As of end 2018, the numbers have been going down, dwindling at 23 percent. I think in 2019 it was at 21 percent,” said NREB Chairman Monalisa Dimalanta.
In terms of capacity, the total installed RE capacity in 2019 stood at almost 5,000 megawatts (MW). Dimalanta said the country is far from hitting the target RE installed capacity of 15,304 MW by 2030.
“We are very, very far from the target,” said Dimalanta. “Apart from the capacity, we have not realized it’s the share in the mix that keeps on dwindling that makes us pause.”
To catch up, Dimalanta proposed the conduct of an energy transition audit. “If we are committed to transitioning to RE, we need to track what’s out there. We need identify, not only assets, programs, laws currently in place, but we also need to review the regulatory framework for energy pricing so that we recognize all the cost components of all these energy resources we have.”
She said local government units (LGUs) play an important role in increasing RE’s share in the mix. “LGUs have to be seen as the primary champions of RE. The DOE [Department of Eenrgy], with the DILG [Department of the Interior and Local Government], has enacted the energy code which will empower the LGUs more closely to identify the resources in their area so that they can be the building blocks of the NREP [National Renewable Energy Program].”
Dimalanta also proposed the crafting of a “market-based and resource specific programs” to address the challenges. The NREB official said there is a need “capacitate consumers for them to ably participate in these programs.”