Energy sector needs P774B investments

Electric vehicles, alternative fuels to get boost


The Agus 6 hydroelectric power plant in Iligan City serves as the main source of electricity for Lanao del Norte and the rest of Western Mindanao. The Philippine energy sector will need P774 billion in fresh investments between now and 2016 to roll out critical infrastructure projects and various programs needed to ensure national energy security. RICHEL V. UMEL/INQUIRER MINDANAO

The Philippine energy sector will need P774 billion in fresh investments between now and 2016 to roll out critical infrastructure projects and various programs needed to ensure national energy security.

An outlook report by the Department of Energy said the required investment would be P53 billion for this year, P281 billion in 2013, P258 billion in 2015 and P182 billion in 2016.

Apart from ensuring national energy security, the investments are also aimed at “climate-proofing” the Philippine energy system, promoting a low-carbon future with the rollout of electric vehicles and the massive use of alternative fuels, adopting smart technologies and facilitating the implementation of strategic infrastructure.

For this year alone, the DOE is targeting to provide electricity access to 9,860 households through the Household Electrification Program and 4,982 villages (composed of roughly 30 households on average) under the Sitio Electrification Program.

The agency is also aiming to deploy 200 compressed natural gas-fed buses within the year and an initial 20,000 electric tricycles within a two-year period starting 2013 under the government’s $500-million e-trike program.

The Philippine government is promoting the use of electric vehicles, particularly for public transport such as the tricycles, as this would benefit the environment and support the country’s drive to become more energy independent.

Based on previous studies, every 20,000 e-trikes that are introduced to Manila’s streets are expected to save the Philippines 100,000 liters of fuel imports each day, saving the country about $35 million a year.

Meanwhile, the use of natural gas for public transport is similarly expected to help wean the country away from its dependence on expensive fuel imports.

Other existing and upcoming projects by the DOE and its attached agencies will include the open access and retail competition, which is expected to start full commercial operation by June 26 this year; the rehabilitation of the Agus and Pulangi hydropower complex in Mindanao; and the implementation of the Interim Mindanao Electricity Market, which will serve as a platform where generators can sell their excess electricity.

The DOE will also continue to promote energy exploration and development following the near completion of the Philippine Energy Contracting Round 4. The energy department announced earlier that 11 contracts for the exploration and development of 11 coal blocks might soon be awarded, while five contracts for oil and gas exploration have already been endorsed to Malacañang for approval.

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  • Sandiego

    Why not cluster nuclear reactors on remote islands. Then run electric cables to the main grid. Expensive but at least the nuclear reactors are away from people if an accident occurs. Are there unpopulated islands to our south or east. Not in west PHL sea due risk of sabotage from China.

  • tadasolo

    Good time as long as it is implemented. The power business should be opened 100% to foreign companies for power generation only. For too long we have been bombarded by nationalistic fervor to protect the incompetence of local officials and made rich a few people and companies who are not subject to competition while subjecting the majority of Filipinos with high electric prices and unreliable power. 

  • Jose Rizal

    Electric transport when electricity rates are super high…
    “DOE will/shall”…as always will be…promoting the inaction of Noynoy government…PPP and oligarchs all the way…

  • henry21

    here comes another reason for PPA….

  • tilney

    China and India are  the big users of coal has  drastically curtail usage of said fuel if we minimize the climate change. Philippines is more renewable energy dependent, where more than 50% use less oil and coal as fuel for power generating plants.Why not join China and India on Coal usage for power plants

    Wind Turbine and Solar are still too expensive for consumers and are not advisable because all of the investement will be passed to the consumers.. Coal is a cheap fuel for the Philippines since Hydro and Geothermal availabilty are limited.

  • JasonBieber

    It’s not just the energy sector that needs investments it’s the whole entire country. The country has yet to see any major foreign investments with this current administration. They spent a lot of money traveling to Davos the other month but still we’ve yet to see any results in terms of investments.

  • WeAry_Bat

    What a big joke.  Low-carbon future but still going for coal which is more carbon than gas.

    At this point in time, everyone from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao has tasted devastating floods from climate change.  Perhaps this summer, a dreadful drought. 

    Yet the persistence for coal in their program.  As if they have not been victimized by the weather, like they do not have any of the modern illnesses linked to so many artificial items in food, air and handled/contact materials.

    Maybe its because the ones who push for and gain on it are living in airconditioned homes on flood-free areas due to height.  They also can afford the freshest food.

    Perhaps climate change will level everyone down to native level, maybe that is where equality will be.

    • Sam

      i dont think equality will happen in that level…it could even be worse

      • WeAry_Bat

         ok in that case, i will tip you off in the far future if we should start buying shotguns, and .45 cal pistols though the 1911A2-.22 TCM looks good, proudly Filipino-designed and made.

  • w33k3nd3r

    I hope this pushes through. We’ve been dependent on the OPEC for far too long when by comparison we can sustain ourselves with food and fruits the whole year round–they can’t eat gas~!

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