Duterte urged to show sincerity in push for renewable energy sources

Published October 1, 2020, 10:57 AM

by Leslie Ann Aquino

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines- National Secretariat for Social Action Justice and Peace challenged President Duterte to walk the talk by showing sincerity about his administration’s push for renewable energy sources in the country.

Bishop Jose Collin Bagaforo (CBCP NEWS / MANILA BULLETIN)

The social action arm of the Catholic Church said this as they recalled the speech of the President during his fifth State-of-the-Nation Address last July, calling on government agencies to fast-track the development of renewable energy and reduce the country’s dependence on “dirty, deadly, and costly” energy sources such as coal.

“However, he continues to approve and support new coal-fired power plants,” Bishop Jose Collin Bagaforo of Kidapawan, National Director of Caritas Philippines, said in a CBCP News post.

“The Philippines is largely dependent on coal – the cheapest fuel option that also contributes the most to greenhouse gas emissions,” he added.

The prelate cited the establishment of three more coal-fired power plants in Quezon province by SMC Global Power Holdings and Atimonan One Energy (A1E)

NASSA said there are actually 27 fully operational coal-fired power plants, which results in having 52 percent share in gross power generation, as of December 2018.

Bagaforo said coal operation is the country’s “unfortunate contribution” to the non-stop destruction of the environment and health risks to communities.

CBCP- NASSA urged the government to honor the international agreements to foster greater care to our common home, “especially in building clearer clean energy pathways, and to declare climate emergency.”

They also called upon all private energy players, especially those in the fossil fuel industry, to start the transition to clean energy solutions.