The Wholesale Electricity Spot Market in Mindanao is set to start commercial operations by the end of the year, an official of Mindanao Development Authority said Monday.
MinDA deputy executive director Romeo Montenegro said market participants and power stakeholders were getting ready for the Mindanao Energy Market.
“With all systems in place and rules laid out, Mindanao gets ready to transition from bilateral contracts to market-operated electricity regime with the anticipated commercial start of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market Mindanao by yearend,” Montenegro said.
He said the Department of Energy, Energy Regulatory Commission and representatives of various electric cooperatives recently attended the WESM Mindanao Roadshow organized by WESM operator Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines and the Association of Mindanao Rural Electric Cooperatives.
“The electricity market is expected to unlock advantages such as having market-driven electricity price, transparency of dispatch, power sourcing flexibility for grid-connected electric cooperatives and market viability for renewable energy players,” Montenegro said.
He said that as co-chair of the Mindanao Power Monitoring Committee, the MinDA had supported measures, policies and programs put forward by DOE to improve the Mindanao power situation, address pricing infirmities and accelerate renewable energy deployment especially in geographically-isolated and disadvantaged areas in the region.
MinDA, OceanPixel and Altum Green Energy Operations signed a memorandum of understanding in September to promote and accelerate the blue economy and green energy in Mindanao.
“We signed an agreement with a Singapore-based company, supported by Australian technology, for an ocean turbine technology. It could be tried in our island provinces,” Montenegro said.
OceanPixel is a Singapore-based sustainability expert company engaged in the blue economy, renewables and green initiatives.
AGEO is an Australia-based marine renewable energy technology developer specializing in hydrokinetic turbines capable of producing clean and predictable electricity from flowing water.
Montenegro said MinDA would work closely with local counterparts and development partners to facilitate entry and implementation of the pioneer RE development project in Mindanao, particularly in the island provinces.
He said Mindanao’s energy transition “will be challenging”, but possible.
He also underscored the need to “re-green” the Mindanao grid.
Mindanao used to be a showcase of renewable energy, but the entry of coal-fired power plants led to a “reversal of RE-fossil energy mix starting in 2017.”