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Energy dep’t designates RE, nuclear as 2023 priorities

THE Department of Energy (DoE) said its priority areas for 2023 are to develop renewable energy (RE) resources and draft a nuclear power roadmap, apart from dealing with an expected power shortage during the dry season.

In a yearend report on Monday, the DoE said it will have various contingency plans in place to ensure adequate power supply for the critical periods of 2023.

“The Department… will ensure that committed power projects, transmission line facilities, and liquefied natural gas infrastructure are completed and delivered on time,” the DoE said.

It said it is also working to ensure the timely completion of transmission projects to support the entry of an additional 711.54 megawatts (MW) of RE capacity and supporting facilities that will enable more RE use such as battery energy storage systems for the Luzon power grid.

The transmission lines are the Mindanao-Visayas Interconnection Project (MVIP), the Cebu-Negros-Panay project and the Hermosa-San Jose Transmission line.

MVIP aims to connect the three main grids to ensure the sharing of energy across the network. It was initially expected to be completed in 2020, but was postponed due to the pandemic.

The Cebu-Negros-Panay Interconnection Project will enable the transmission of up to 85 MW in surplus power from the Western Visayas, while the Hermosa-San Jose Transmission line in Bataan is expected to support stranded power capacity.

The DoE said it will continue to develop the policy framework for emerging RE technologies.

The impending nuclear power roadmap will be prepared in collaboration with experts, the private sector, and the International Atomic Agency.

The DoE said it will study the possible inclusion of nuclear power to the power mix by developing small-scale nuclear power plants.

The nuclear power roadmap will guide the Nuclear Energy Program Implementing Organization and the Nuclear Energy Program Inter-Agency Committee in rolling the nuclear power program.

The DoE is also hoping to formulate a national total electrification roadmap through the implementation of the Microgrid Systems Act to accelerate the electrification of off-grid areas.

As of June, the household electrification rate was 95.8%.

The DoE said it also hopes to launch the Mindanao Wholesale Electricity Spot Market by Jan. 26. — Ashley Erika O. Jose