NGO: Natural gas would slow down the transition to RE

ilijan kepco edited

Power for People Coalition warned that using liquefied natural gas (LNG) as ‘transition fuel’ threatens the rise of renewable energy (RE) in the country’s power generation mix.

In a report by the Business World,  Power for People Coalition convenor Gerry C. Arances shared that though the government already subdued the use of fossil fuel, the introduction of a new fossil fuel, particularly LNG, will undermine the ongoing transition to RE.

Arances added that with the use of LNG, the country is at risk of the unpredictability of its price which would result in higher electricity prices. 

Currently, the Malampaya gas field is the only indigenous commercial source of the country’s natural gas. It is expected to be depleted by 2027 and for Arances, even though the country has Malampaya, the price of domestic gas is set to the price of the world market.

When asked to comment, the Department of Energy (DOE) stood by its decision saying that the support of other technologies like flexible power plants which are fueled by natural gas and power storage systems is very important in achieving the RE target. 

The energy department added that Natural gas-fired power plants can be”quick-starting reserves” to aid the variability of other RE technologies such as wind and solar. 

The DOE added that the proposed policy would offer stability to the power system wherein distribution utilities on the Luzon grid would be required to source some of their power needs from natural gas-fired generation resources.

Such sourcing would be done via the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM), a competitive selection process, or an auction.