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Poe identifies clean energy, lower electric rates as another priority

Cagayan De Oro City—Citing the protection of women’s rights as her priority in Wednesday’s meeting in Iligan City, Senator Grace Poe pledged Thursday to prioritize clean and alternative sources of energy if she wins as the country’s 16th president in the May 9 elections.

Riding on the energy issue, Poe pledged to lower electric power rates and provide stable and reliable electric power supply in the country.

The lady senator sought the rehabilitation of hydro-power plants, particularly the Agus and Pulangi dams, even as she reiterated the importance of clean sources of energy to address the country’s energy requirements.

“’Pag ako’y naging pangulo, talagang prayoridad ko ‘yung clean and alternative sources of energy. Pero gusto ko rin na manatiling mababa ang presyo ng kuryente para sa ating mga kababayan. Kasi kung maraming supply, mas mababa ang singil. Kaya sisiguraduhin ko na maraming supply para hindi tayo nagbabayad ng napakataas para sa kuryente. (When I become president, the use of clean and alternative sources of energy will be my priority. I will make sure that electric power rates will be lower. If there is more power supply, the power rates will be lower. I would ensure that we have sufficient supply so that we won’t pay for high electricity rates),” she told reporters.

 “We should rehabilitate and de-silt the Agus and Pulangi dams as additional sources of our hydro power. We should also look for alternative sources of energy in Mindanao. Clean energy is what we should support, she said in Tagalog.

However, Poe lamented the fact that it takes five years to ensure the establishment of power plants.

The problem is, when the power plant is completed, our power needs have surged, Poe said in Tagalog, also expressing concern that coal power plants have “environmental impacts.”

Last week, Mindanao and Luzon were placed  on a power “red alert” following the diminishing reserves due to prolonged El Niño. Malacañang had assured a “zero disruption” a week before and after May 9.

The Philippines has one of the highest electricity rates in Asia. According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, electricity accounted for 4.5 percent of a Filipino household’s expenditures in 2012.

RENEWABLE ENERGY

Poe sought the development of renewable sources of energy following the series of power interruptions in the country, particularly in Mindanao.

Poe said that under her government, she would push for the development of more solar and wind power sources to power the homes of some 15 million Filipinos, particularly in remote areas, who still have no access to electricity.

Poe said more private investments in the energy sector should be encouraged to increase renewable energy share in the market.

The Department of Energy (DOE) estimates that the Philippines will need an additional 11,400 megawatts (MW) of generating capacity to meet the energy demand from 2016 to 2030. The additional requirement is distributed as follows: 8,100 MW in Luzon; 1,700 MW in Visayas; and 1,600 MW in Mindanao.

In her proclamation speech in September last year, Poe said that renewable energy development is included in her 20-point government agenda.

She earlier called on the government to implement the mechanisms of the Renewable Energy Act of 2008, particularly the establishment of the Renewable Energy Market, which will mandate power distributors to source a portion of their energy from renewable energy suppliers.

PEACE IN MINDANAO

Aside from the search for renewable sources of energy, Poe also vowed to continue the search for lasting peace in Mindanao.

She said she would establish a comprehensive Bangsamoro framework that would ensure an all-inclusive peace and economic stability in the southern Philippines.

We need to continue our peace talks to provide real and lasting peace in Mindanao. All groups, whether Muslims or Christians should go back to the negotiating table, Poe said.

She noted that the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) which remains pending with both chambers of Congress should be revisited.

The BBL was an offshoot of the government’s Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) signed on March 28, 2014 to end the long years of armed conflict in Mindanao.

  • Pilosopong Tambay

    Poe said that under her government, she would push for the development of more solar and wind power sources to power the homes of some 15 million Filipinos, particularly in remote areas, who still have no access to electricity adn we believe in Sen.Grace Poe good plans in making energy in this country less expensive.

  • Pilosopong Tambay

    Poe said that under her government, she would push for the development of more solar and wind power sources to power the homes of some 15 million Filipinos, particularly in remote areas, who still have no access to electricity adn we believe in Sen.Grace Poe good plans in making energy in this country less expensive.

  • Pilosopong Tambay

    Poe said that under her government, she would push for the development of more solar and wind power sources to power the homes of some 15 million Filipinos, particularly in remote areas, who still have no access to electricity adn we believe in Sen.Grace Poe good plans in making energy in this country less expensive.