Press Release
August 11, 2011


Senator Edgardo J. Angara reiterated his call for government to hasten efforts in implementing mechanisms for the promotion of a Renewable Energy (RE) industry in the Philippines.

Angara, Chair of the Congressional Commission on Science, Technology and Engineering (COMSTE), made the statement after the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) suspended its public hearing on the feed-in-tariff (FIT) rates petitioned by the National Renewable Energy Board (NREB), after it was discovered that NREB failed to publish the full proposal due to a lack of funds.

NREB Chairman Pedro H. Maniego, however, hinted that the deficiency may be resolved soon saying: "It's good that the Department of Energy will help us, as NREB itself does not have any budget."

"With these delays, the window becomes narrower for our country to capitalize on the business opportunities presented by the global shift to renewables. Aside from the obvious environmental benefits of renewable energy, the government should also consider the large number of green jobs the industry could generate," said Angara.

According to the World Watch Institute, there are currently around 2.3 million jobs worldwide in the renewable energy sector and that the number is continuously rising.

Global investments in renewable energy reached a record of $211 billion in 2010, according to the report Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2011 conducted jointly by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Frankfurt School's Collaborating Centre for Climate and Sustainable Energy and Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

"Many economies--both developed and developing--are putting money into their renewable energy industries. If we do not act now to build our own capacities in wind, solar, geothermal, biofuel or biomass, we let ourselves get left behind," said Angara.

Angara was the lead author of RA 9513, the Renewable Energy Act of 2008, which promotes the establishment of an RE industry in the Philippines. With COMSTE, Angara has been pushing for the establishment of the Renewable Energy Research and Development Institute (RERDI) as a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in developing RE technologies.

"Investors have already cited the Philippines as a prime source for renewable energy, and have expressed interest in investing in the country. I'm hopeful that the government takes heed and finally lays down a clear policy for renewables," said Angara.

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