THE Philippine Solar Producers Association (PSPA) has expressed strong opposition to the move to impose installation caps on solar and wind projects.
PSPA president Tetchie Capellan said the move by the National Renewable Energy Board (NREB) has no basis and would just dissuade investors.
“Putting a cap, I think, doesn’t have a basis because it kills the investment climate,” Capellan said.
NREB chairman Pedro Maniego Jr. earlier said the move will give more renewable energy (RE) developers a fair chance to pursue the technology.
For solar, the board is proposing an installation cap of 50 megawatts (MW) per project and 100 MW each for wind power projects.
Capellan said the NREB should find a commercial basis for such proposal. “I have never seen any installation target in the whole world that caps on a per project size,” she said.
Capellan explained that sometimes the environment does not allow a developer to recover the cost at 50 MW because solar is resource-based.
“So if the resources are, like for example the terrain is hilly, you have to cover more as much as possible to generate, and putting a cap per project is not really something that one should think about,” she added.
She said imposing an installation cap is not a good way to lure and convince RE developers to invest in the country.
“It is very difficult to attract investors but in the case of solar, it is attracting them and [they are]building and risking. That, to us, is very positive. Now putting a cap, I think, doesn’t have a basis because it kills the investment climate,” she said.
What NREB should do, she added, is to promote a climate conducive to investment by increasing the installation capacity so that it could be spread to all RE developers.
“The way to spread is to increase the target, and we believe that solar has created an environment that attracts investors,” she said.
She stressed that going beyond the cap is a good thing because it means that local and foreign investors are staking in their money to help government build the infrastructure that is needed to address the peak power load.
Maniego earlier said the board will be coordinating with the Department of Energy (DOE), which is the one implementing the installation targets, for the adoption of the proposal. He said they will also recommend the same to the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) which is responsible for computing the Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) incentives.