Press Release
January 18, 2011


As oil prices continue to increase Senator Edgardo J. Angara pressed government to pursue renewable energy (RE) use in order to decrease dependence on imported fuel and encourage local entrepreneurs to go into the development of the country's vast alternative energy resources.

Recently, the pump prices of gasoline and diesel increased by P0.50/liter and P0.25/liter. According to the Department of Energy (DOE) oil price fluctuations early this year resulted from mixed world economic news and supply concerns. It was also affected by the US dollar fluctuations as investors watch over economic data in the world's big energy-consuming nations.

"We are at the mercy of constant world oil price fluctuations and consequently by the oil companies operating in the business. Each year, we import 94% of all our crude oil needs while our oil consumption is projected to rise by more than 10% in the next decade," said Angara, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Science and Technology.

"The Philippines is one of the most oil-dependent countries in Asia. This puts us in a vulnerable position as the country's demand for energy can only be expected to grow as households, transport and factories multiply," he added.

A study by the University of the Philippines which was commissioned by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), by increasing the country's share of indigenous renewable energy in its power generation mix to 41% the country can save as much as US$2.9 billion from avoided fossil fuel imports, Renewable Energy Coalition said that such savings is enough to send 17 million children to elementary school, build 250,000 classrooms, put up 135,000 health centers, feed 14 million families, and build farm-to-market roads.

Angara enumerated solar, geothermal, hydro and wind energy as proven power technologies, for which the Philippines has great and untapped potential.

"The future is in clean, renewable energy, which is predicted to be one of the biggest industries by 2014. It is a vital step we must take in order to harness and develop the abundant alternative energy resources that our country possesses, to benefit both present and future generations."

The Renewable Energy Act of 2008 authored by Angara encourages local entrepreneurs to go into the development of the country's vast renewable energy resources and decrease our dependence on imported fossil fuel.

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