Malacañang seeks to switch to local energy sources

MANILA, Philippines — The government is pushing for the country to rely on local energy resources to reduce high electricity tariffs in the country, according to Malacañang.

“This decision aims to reduce the country’s dependence on the import of energy resources in recent years, as ordered by President Marcos in the Ministry of Energy (DOE),” publicist Trixie Cruz-Angeles said in a statement posted on her office’s Facebook page.

Angeles, who joined a press briefing with Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla on Tuesday, said he promised the government would “develop measures to reduce the Philippines’ dependence on resources energy from other countries”.

Citing DOE data, Angeles said 56.8% of the nation’s energy needs were imported while 43.2% came from local sources.

In his first State of the Nation address on July 25, Marcos said the government must build new power plants and push for the use of renewable energy to bring down the price of electricity in the country.

Stressing that demand for energy exceeded reliable supply, he pushed for the construction of new power plants while taking advantage of “all the best technologies currently available, particularly in the areas of renewable energy”.

“Our search for new energy sources should always aim to improve the energy supply mix between traditional and renewable sources,” he added.

Marcos also lobbied for the possible revival and construction of nuclear power plants in the country.

During the election campaign, he said he wanted the government to reverse the possible relaunch of the Bataan nuclear power plant, a $2.3 billion facility built during the tenure of his father, former President Ferdinand Marcos. Sr.

The power station, however, never became operational due to allegations of corruption and security concerns.

The president assured the public that the Philippines would comply with International Atomic Energy Agency regulations for nuclear power plants.

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Rosemary C. Kearney