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Philippines targets 21GW offshore wind by 2040

The Department of Energy (DOE) of the Philippines has published its offshore wind roadmap setting out plans for reaching up to 21 gigawatts (GW) offshore wind by 2040.

Renewables expert John Yeap of Pinsent Masons said: “Being an archipelagic nation, the Philippines is well placed to harness its offshore wind resource, and the recently issued roadmap provides a comprehensive set of issues that have to be addressed in order to deliver on the ambition. Some of these challenges are unique to the Philippines, such as constitutional issues around ownership of natural energy sources that would limit the level of foreign participation. Some are technical challenges that we are also seeing in other parts of Asia, such as the likely need to deploy floating turbines.” 

“However, many of the challenges are common across the nations in the region seeking to develop the offshore wind sector.  These range from putting in place a transparent and robust regulatory framework and establishing an offtake structure that would attract the required financing, through to addressing local supply chain issues and environmental considerations. As nations move closer towards their ‘net zero’ date, offshore wind will be a renewable energy resource that cannot be ignored, given the context of increasing demand and decreasing dependence on carbon based power generation,” he said.

The roadmap (330-page/8.0MB), which was produced in conjunction with the World Bank, includes a ‘low growth’ option and a ‘high growth’ option. The low growth option provides a plan for offshore wind installation levels consistent with DOE’s current national renewable energy programme. Under this option, the Philippines would be able to install 3GW offshore wind capacity by 2040.

The high growth option sets out a plan to install new developments at a level high enough to drive competition, investment, and cost reductions. Under this option, the country would be able to install 21GW offshore wind capacity by 2040, making up 21% of its electricity supply.

The plan recommends that the government of the Philippines first publish its long-term plans for offshore wind until 2050 as part of a decarbonised energy mix. Further recommendations include building up offshore wind development zones, investing in transmission, port and other energy infrastructure upgrades, and working with industry and other relevant government agencies.

The DOE launched the roadmap under the support of the World Bank Group (WBG). They announced this plan in June 2021. 

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