By Director Cesar G. dela Fuente III
Quality, reliable, secure, and affordable power throughout the entire archipelago will be the backbone of a vibrant and robust Philippine economy.
To this end, the Department of Energy (DOE) remains resolute in initiating proactive policies attuned to the ever-changing energy landscape.
The 2017 Energy Annual Report (EAR) outlines the progress effected by the Department and the members of the energy family in its mission to steer the country closer towards sustained prosperity and security.
Faithful to his oath to crack down on red tape, the President signed Executive Order (EO) No. 30, a milestone achievement for the energy sector, streamlining the processes and implementation of energy projects. The EO is expected to usher increased investments in energy infrastructure augmenting the countryʼs energy supply base. This would also translate to increased job creation and enhanced consumer
The Philippines is vulnerable to natural and human-induced hazards. The DOE, as one of the members of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, strongly supports the government’s focus on reinforcing the country’s disaster resiliency.
To maintain the continued delivery of services in the event of a calamity, the DOE is relentless in pursuing an energy resiliency policy that will strengthen existing energy infrastructures and require all industry players to put the mainstreaming of disaster risk reduction programs at the forefront of their planning and investment.
In the field of international energy cooperation, the DOE had the opportunity to chair the 35th ASEAN Ministers on Energy Meeting and its associated meetings, as well as host the various sub-sector network assemblies with the theme, “One ASEAN Community through Resilient and Sustainable Energy.”
The DOE likewise participated in the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Energy Working Group Meetings and hosted the Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) Conference in Bohol. During the conference, ACD member countries exchanged best practices and developments during the various energy thematic sessions on renewable energy and clean energy markets, natural gas, a low carbon future and nuclear energy.
In powering the nation, the DOE is continuously working to enhance the implemented tasks mandated by the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA).
WESM Mindanao’s establishment is a breakthrough that would uphold the transparent utilization and efficient dispatch of available resources needed to ensure sufficient electricity supply in the region.
The implementation of the Retail Competition and Open Access (RCOA) program will provide consumers the privilege to select their electricity provider based on the quality of service and preferred price. In the event of unsatisfactory performance, RCOA program would allow consumers to switch to another provider at any time.
The Department remains at the fore of key policies, which include the implementation of the Nationwide Intensification of Household Electrification, Renewable Portfolio Standards, Green Energy Options, and the Energy Regulation 1-94 Program.
Innovation is integral to the DOE’s response to the advances in the energy sector. The launch of the E-Power Mo Campaign underscored the value of an inclusive approach towards energy security and development.
E-Power Mo and its sub-campaigns of E-Safety Mo, E-Secure Mo and E-Diskarte Mo demonstrate that shaping the energy future of the country does not depend on the DOE alone, but on the combined efforts of all energy stakeholders.
Tireless in its efforts to provide reliable and affordable power to the people, the DOE was unafraid to consider the feasibility of using nuclear power as an energy source and created the Nuclear Energy Program Implementing Organization (NEPIO). After thorough proposal evaluations, as well as a comprehensive reassessment of the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, the DOE incorporated the creation of a nuclear program into the Philippine Energy Plan 2017-2040.
The DOE remains firm in the stringent monitoring of the energy industryʼs compliance to reliability standards to uphold the interest of consumers. To address increased concerns over fuel integrity, the Department conducted random facility inspections and sample testing to confirm adherence to national standards.
Loyal in its service to the Filipino people, the DOE sought for the immediate reenergization of Marawi in the aftermath of the cityʼs siege. With the help of the energy family and other government agencies, solar lamps and streetlights were turned over to Task Force Bangon Marawi and the Lanao del Sur Electric Cooperative. The Department is actively involved in the rehabilitation efforts to date.