Thursday, July 13, 2017

Cusi: 'E-Power Mo! To Empower Energy Consumers

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi led today the launch of the government's “E-Power Mo!” campaign designed to empower consumers by providing them information and options on the intelligent utilization of energy resources.

The "E-Power Mo!" campaign brought together the Department of Energy (DOE), the Presidential Communications Operations Office, the Philippine Information Agency and the USAID B-Leaders at the Philippine International Convention Center.

In his keynote message during the event, Cusi emphasized that energy sufficiency is a cornerstone of the Duterte administration's thrust towards a globally competitive and inclusive economy that improves the quality of life of all Filipinos.

Without sufficient energy to power industries, Cusi said, it would be most difficult to pump-prime the economy en route to creating more jobs, improving the delivery of government services, and fast-tracking infrastructure projects.

The DOE, Cusi explained, is pursuing a neutral stance insofar as fuel and energy sources are concerned, and the guiding principle is for the energy mix to take into account both economic and ecological concerns.

The agency, he said, should keep an open mind on the country's options insofar as the energy mix is concerned.

The Energy chief emphasized that the DOE will "work on initiatives to ensure affordable, reliable, modern and sustainable energy. We will pursue a fuel and technology neutrality, balancing environment and socio-economic growth through competitive selection process."

"And contrary to what people might think," he stressed, "I am not against renewable energy, I am against high-energy rates."

He said he supports all energy sources as long as they make economic sense in the long term for consumers, industries and the economy as a whole.

Cusi cited DOE's projection that the country would need an additional capacity of almost 44,000 megawatts from 2017 to 2040.

In order to meet the additional capacity requirements, Cusi said, President Duterte recently signed Executive Order 30 to streamline the regulatory procedures that affect foreign and local investors' appetite to bankroll energy projects.

The EO created the Energy Investment Coordinating Council tasked to coordinate the efforts of various government agencies and private sector participants in fast-tracking the implementation of major energy projects.

The projects will be endorsed by the DOE as undertakings of "national significance" if they are in accordance or in support of the ‎2017-2022 Philippine Energy Plan, Cusi told his audience at the PICC.

"Our projections show that we need additional capacity of almost 44,000 megawatts from 2017 to 2040. We have on hand the Philippine Energy Plan ‎2017-2022 and its comprehensive sectoral roadmaps to guide us in our long-term planning on energy," Cusi said.

The Philippine Energy Plan ‎2017-2022 is the blueprint for attaining the government's vision of economic development contained in "Ambisyon 2040."

He added that the DOE is also institutionalizing disaster resilience in the energy sector for strengthening energy systems and facilities, quick restoration and provision of alternative sources that would lessen the burden to consumers during calamities.

"The Philippines is one of the countries most vulnerable to natural calamities. We experience an average of around 20 typhoons per year, flash floods, storm surges, earthquakes and landslides," Cusi pointed out.

"Just last week, the Visayas experienced a magnitude 6.5 earthquake that affected electricity supply in Leyte, Samar and Bohol. In circumstances like these, it is our task to make sure that electricity services are restored at the fastest possible time.”

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