DOE expands list of accredited RE power suppliers

Published September 18, 2021, 6:02 PM

by Myrna M. Velasco

The Department of Energy (DOE) has added two more firms in the expanding list of renewable energy (RE) suppliers that can directly offer their generated electricity to end-users under the ambit of the Green Energy Option Program (GEOP).

The GEOP is a policy tool that will give consumers the ‘power of choice’ so they can directly contract their power requirements with preferred green energy suppliers – and in the process, this will also broaden the base of RE investments in the country.

The latest addition in the GEOP-accredited list of suppliers, according to the energy department, are: DirectPower Services Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ayala Land Inc.; and Solar Philippines Retail Electricity Inc., a company affiliated with young businessman Leandro Leviste.

The other RE suppliers previously licensed by the DOE had been: BacMan Geothermal Inc., First Gen Energy Solutions Inc., SN Aboitiz Power-Magat Inc., SN Aboitiz Power-RES Inc., AC Energy Philippines Inc., SPARC-Solar Powered Agri-Rural Communities Corporation, Citicore Energy Solutions Inc., Aboitiz Energy Solutions Inc., Prism Energy Inc., Adventenergy Inc., Shell Energy Philippines Inc. and Green Core Geothermal Inc.

Most of the RE suppliers also belong to the country’s biggest power producers, such as the Aboitiz, Lopez and Ayala groups – the same players who are also intensifying competition in the power retailing segment of the restructured power sector.

Before a company could enter into a GEOP supply contract with an end-user, that entity will need to secure first an operating permit from the DOE, as prescribed under the agency’s Department Circular No. DC2020-04-0009.

As stated in the policy, “the DOE, through its Renewable Energy Management Bureau (REMB), shall be responsible for evaluating all applications for the issuance of GEOP operating permits to eligible RE suppliers.”

It was similarly prescribed that the retail electricity suppliers licensed by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) in the Retail Competition and Open Access (RCOA) space “may be automatically issued an operating permit as RE supplier under GEOP,” but subject to the applicant’s submission of requirement documents.

The GEOP operating permit will be for a period of five years; and renewal shall be done at least six (6) months prior to the expiration of the issued license.

The department specified that renewal of the permit shall be based on its evaluation and determination on whether or not the RE supplier has complied with all the requirements and prevailing rules set forth for the GEOP policy.

The DOE Circular further stipulated that “to accelerate exploration, development and utilization of RE resources and to ensure RE supply is available in a least-cost manner, RE suppliers and RE generators/developers may enter into a joint action or establish a pool of RE supply under the GEOP to the extent permitted by applicable laws.” ###