DoE receives over 24 recommendations for 10th port in offshore wind dev’t study

DoE receives over 24 recommendations for 10th port in offshore wind dev’t study

By Sheldeen Joy Talavera, Reporter

THE Department of Energy (DoE) has received more than 24 recommendations for the 10th port to be studied for repurposing for offshore wind development, an official said on Monday.

“We are deliberating on the 10th port, taking into account the recommendations of the offshore wind developers, also the proximity to the service contracts,” Energy Undersecretary Giovanni Carlo J. Bacordo told BusinessWorld.

“Medyo nahirapan kami (We’re having a bit of difficulty determining) the 10th port because… the developers submitted… more than 24 (recommendations),” he also said.

The DoE is studying the upgrade of ports to support the development of offshore wind projects in the Philippines, with technical assistance from the Asian Development Bank, which requires 10 ports to be included in the study.

Nine ports have already been identified, including the Port of Irene in Sta. Ana, Cagayan; Port of Subic; Port of Currimao in Ilocos Norte; Port of Pulupandan in Negros Occidental; Port of Tabaco in Albay; and Bulalacao Port in Oriental Mindoro.

The list also includes the International Container Port Complex in Iloilo; the Energy Supply Base port facility of the state-run Philippine National Oil Co. in Batangas; and the port facility of the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. in Bauan, Batangas. 

Mr. Bacordo said that the submission of the proposed 10th port location is expected no later than February.

The study results are expected to be ready by October 2024.

“We are requesting the owners or the operators of these ports for their cooperation to allow the people who will be conducting feasibility study access to their ports, to furnish them with whatever available information,” he said.

The nine identified ports are the areas with the highest wind potential and also the areas where there are clusters of offshore wind service contracts.

To date, the DoE has awarded a total of 82 offshore wind energy service contracts, with a potential capacity of about 63 gigawatts (GW).

Under the Philippine Offshore Wind Roadmap, the Philippines has an estimated potential capacity of 178 GW in offshore wind resources.

This is expected to help the country reach its aim of increasing the share of renewables to 35% by 2030 and 50% by 2040.

“Right now, we have 82 offshore wind energy service contracts. If we just have these 10 ports, I’m sure that these 10 ports will not suffice for the mobilization of these 82 service contracts,” Mr. Bacordo said.

The pre-feasibility study forms part of the ports development plan of the Transportation department and the Philippine Ports Authority, he said.

“If it’s a government port but not included in the budget, maybe we can go into PPP (public-private partnership) agreements with the private sector,” Mr. Bacordo said.

“For private ports, we are hoping that the private owners who develop these ports… can go to a joint venture with another private firm for the repurpose of ports for offshore wind,” he said.