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Gatchalian urges DOE to act on all pending solar-project applications

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian called on the Department of Energy (DOE) to immediately act on all pending solar project applications since there was a mechanism that streamlines the permitting process for both foreign and domestic investors.

In a Saturday statement, Gatchalian said he took note of reports about the mounting solar project applications that will yield capacity installations of more than 13,217 megawatts.

The influx of solar project applications is in line with the government’s planned rollout of the Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) policy next year.

RPS mandates electricity suppliers to source a portion of their energy supply from eligible renewable energy (RE) resources to contribute to the growth of the RE industry in the country.

“A law is already in place ensuring that there won’t be any delay in the permitting process of energy projects. This is aimed at eliminating red tape and enticing more investments in the energy sector,” the senator said.

“Naisabatas na ito noon pang nakaraang taon, bago pa man magka-pandemya. At ngayon na may kinakaharap tayong krisis, mas lalong napapanahon at makabuluhan ang batas na ito,” he added.

Gatchalian, who chairs the Senate Energy Committee, was referring to the Energy Virtual One-Stop Shop (EVOSS) Act, enacted last year.

The EVOSS act provides an online process for completing requirements of energy-related projects, including the submission of documentary requirements and online payment of fees.

It is under the control and supervision of the DOE.

The senator noted that in the long run, EVOSS could bring down electricity costs. — DVM, GMA News