At least 10 offshore wind projects with 6.72-gigawatt (GW) capacity are expected to generate power by 2028, according to Energy Undersecretary Rowena Cristina Guevara.
Guevara said that as of November 2023, 82 offshore wind energy service contracts with total capacity of 63.36 GW have been awarded by the DOE.
The projects are located mainly in north Luzon, west of Metro Manila, and various areas in Mindoro, Panay, and Guimaras Strait.
Guevara said a 2019 World Bank study revealed a potential 178-GW of offshore wind in the Philippines, leading to numerous service contract applications.
However, she said developers have identified four key elements for short-to-medium term success in offshore wind projects.
These include clear regulatory framework for permitting and seabed leasing, dedicated and competitive market support, availability of timely transmission system and interconnection facilities, and ports supporting storage, assembly, construction, and operation of offshore wind farms.
Guevara said the DOE is coordinating with the Department of Transportation and the Philippine Ports Authority in identifying potential ports and private investors that can upgrade ports needed for large offshore wind projects.
“Prioritization of offshore wind port development will dovetail the timeline of offshore wind developers,” she said.
On top of policy and regulatory support, Guevara said the DOE is also continuously advancing offshore wind development through funded programs.
Securing support from the Energy Transition Partnership, the agency is implementing marine spatial planning (MSP) and a study on permitting and consenting.
“MSP is crucial for derisking projects, identifying development zones, and planning for necessary network upgrades. The study on permitting and consenting aids the implementation of EO 21, clarifying requirements for offshore wind development permits and approvals,” Guevara said.
Citing the importance of grid readiness for offshore wind capacity, Guevara said the DOE, with World Bank Group assistance, is engaged in grid integration and transmission planning.
These include activities in wind resource measurement, which identifies offshore wind development zones and sets auction price ceilings, as well as transmission expansion and upgrades which reviews data, presents future generation scenarios, and outlines indicative transmission plans for 2030, 2035, and 2040.
Guevara said the Energy Secure Philippines project of the United States Agency for International Development has also funded the implementation of capacity-building program on offshore wind which was conceptualized to capacitate government agencies, financing institutions and developers in various aspects of offshore wind development.
In addition, the capacity-building program intends to map out the existing and needed workforce skills to support the offshore wind industry.
Offshore wind energy has been identified by the DOE as one of its top priorities in the country’s renewable energy sector.
As such, the DOE and its national government agency partners are working on developing an ecosystem for the offshore wind power industry in hopes of having the Philippines’ first offshore wind project operational before the term of the current administration ends.
In the updated Philippine Energy Plan, which the DOE will be releasing, offshore wind has been included in the country’s portfolio of renewable energy.