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ASEAN rolling out next wave of ‘low emissions’ power technologies

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By Myrna M. Velasco

Member-countries of the Southeast Asian region are now giving sharp focus on more massive deployment of high efficiency, low emissions (HELE) technologies, especially for nations that can still not totally get out from the clutches of coal-fired electricity generation on aims of economic advancements.

This had been thrown into the core of discussions during the 14th Energy Security Forum (ESF) hosted by the Philippines that engaged all ASEAN countries plus the region’s three strategic partner-countries of China, Japan, and South Korea.

The more developed country-peers are already moving headway into installations of ‘emissions lowering technologies,” but this is a pace yet to make progress in many ASEAN countries, including the Philippines.

For coal technologies, economically-advanced Asian countries are already way forward on to deployment of the advanced ultra supercritical (A-USC) as well as integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) and integrated gasification fuel cell cycle (IGFC) technologies.

With technology upgrades and further modernization now being re-embraced as a ‘solution option’ to the world’s global warming dilemmas, the Asean + 3 countries set a consensus in the Manila meeting that they will “conduct regular sharing of relevant energy developments,” not just on coal plants but also on nuclear as well as on investment terrains in the oil and gas sector.

For many countries though, decisive policy steps as well as market reinforcements are still being thought out so power plant developers would be enticed on pursuing technology upgrades in their facilities.

Department of Energy (DOE) explained that the ESF “focused on the latest energy trends in the region, including energy consumption, power generation and energy self-sufficiency.”

The meeting similarly reviewed “technical preparations of the energy outlook of the Asean + 3 member-economies,” generally highlighting modeling framework and major assumptions relating to total primary energy supply (TPES), final energy consumption and power generation mix – integrating fossil fuels in attaining supply-demand balance and also factoring in efficiency gains as well as reductions of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

“Each ASEAN member-state shared best practices on oil security and provided updates regarding their oil stockpiling status and directions,” the energy department noted further.

For Japan Oil Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC), it shared status report on its stockpiling capacity building program; while its Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) had thrown light on their oil stockpiling outreach policy.

There had also been discussions with China General Nuclear Power Group on “the sharing of experiences in nuclear front-end planning.”

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