USAID Clean Power Asia
Harnessing the power of renewable energy for a sustainable ASEAN
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The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has renewed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the International Energy Agency (IEA) to scale up collaboration and advance progress on sustainability with increased focus on energy sector resilience in Asia and the Pacific. “The energy sector is a key driver of growth and human development, especially during recovery from the impacts of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic,” said ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa. “We are pleased to renew our agreement with IEA, which builds on our successful collaboration to date, and we look forward to advancing our shared objective of achieving a more sustainable and resilient energy future in Asia and the Pacific.”
Floating solar power plants are expected to generate around 900% more electricity across the Asia-Pacific region. That’s according to a new report from the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), which suggests countries in Asia leads European nations in deploying floating solar farms. It adds floating solar installations have shown they can withstand typhoons, powerful waves and winds gusting up to 170 kilometres an hour, with such projects now being tested by manufacturers. While the first floating solar plant was installed in Japan in 2007, China is currently the largest player on the market. The two countries had a combined installed capacity of 1.3 GW at the end of 2018 while Vietnam has installed around 47 MW of capacity.
The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, Global Warming of 1.5 ºC, notes the importance of mobilizing green finance for limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius and preventing catastrophic climate change. In line with this, some countries have been implementing policies to support green bonds. Green bonds are debt securities whose proceeds are used to fund environmental projects, including climate change mitigation and adaptation. Therefore, unlike conventional bonds, green bonds finance projects with clear environmental benefits (ICMA 2018). The issuance of green bonds around the world has grown rapidly, from $3.4 billion in 2012 to $235 billion in 2019.
The Philippine government, through the Department of Energy (DOE), is advancing a policy re-casting that will allow full or 100-percent foreign ownership in renewable energy (RE) projects. That will be a shift from the current 60:40 equity arrangement in the RE development sphere, constitutionally favoring Filipinos to own 60-percent interest in RE project corporate vehicles/project companies, and only the balance of 40-percent can be granted to foreign investor-partners. The 60:40 equity sharing deal had always been one of the tricky concerns and viewed as a “limiting factor” on planned capital flow from foreign firms for the array of RE installations in the Philippines.