The Philippines is moving toward energy resiliency in terms of systems, infrastructure and power rates, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said on Tuesday.
Addressing delegates of the ASEAN 35th Senior Officials Meeting on Energy (SOME) at the Okada Manila, Cusi said they are responsible for ensuring energy security in the region to sustain their own domestic economies.
Cusi emphasized the task has become more urgent as the region moves towards the realization of an ASEAN Economic Community through greater partnerships.
ASEAN is the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, which counts Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam as members.
Backing the Philippine government’s plan to realize the golden age of infrastructure, Cusi said the country would need another 44,000 megawatts of power until 2040.
The Department of Energy (DoE) has set its eyes on “an optimal demand behavior-based fuel mix with 70-20-10 share of baseload, mid-merit and peaking capacity requirement to support our growing economy.”
Cusi emphasized that the challenge is how to boost the nation’s energy supply, particularly electricity, both for grid and off-grid areas.
The department intends to implement rules aimed at boosting supply and making the electricity market more competitive in order to address longstanding concerns of inefficiencies in the system.
The DoE’s draft policy on disaster resilency was also unveiled on Tuesday. It would undergo a series of public consultations to strengthen the resiliency of the Philippine energy sector in times of natural disasters by bolstering systems and facilities, swiftly restoring damaged facilities, and providing alternative energy sources.
Noting the country’s vulnerability to disasters, Cusi said the DoE “will pursue distributed electrification for currently off-grid island provinces through independent mini and micro grids served by local indigenous power sources like run-of-river and biomass.”
The major undertakings under the planned policy includes enforcing the ‘Build-back Better’ principle in reconstructing and rehabilitating infrastructures, improving operational and maintenance guidelines and procedures.