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National Renewable Energy Program is a step towards energy self-sufficiency, says Aquino

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President Benigno S. Aquino III formally launched the government's National Renewable Energy Program (NREP) that aims to address the spiraling cost and insufficiencies in the supply of electricity, especially in rural areas, in ceremonies held at the Makati Shangri-la recently.

The NREP contains a framework for action, existing and future measures, instruments and policies for the promotion of renewable energy as well as a roadmap which will guide efforts towards actualizing the market penetration targets of each renewable energy source in the country.

In his speech keynoting the event, the President underscored the importance of renewable energy saying it does more than empower cities, machines and entire industries but also “fuels our movement towards the rebuilding of this nation.”

“Renewable energy will fuel our future,” the President said.

He added that through renewable energy, we will be able to supply the electricity needs of our people at a much lower cost and not at the expense of the environment.

“The National Renewable Energy Program today points us in the right direction in terms of finding long-term and sustainable energy sources. Our launch today is a symbolic first step in our journey towards fulfilling our vision of a Philippines unbound from the vagaries of the world oil market—a Philippines where we can choose not to sacrifice the environment, particularly the air we breathe, just to power our industries,” the President said.

He pointed out that with the NREP in place, the government hopes to achieve the “twin goals of harnessing our renewable energy potential while ensuring that our people’s energy needs are met.”

“With this in mind, the plan is to nearly triple our renewable energy-based capacity from around 5,400 megawatts in 2010 to 15,300 megawatts in 2030,” the President said.

He allayed fears that pursuing renewable energy development would only lead to higher electricity costs saying, “the Department of Energy is confident that, along with the Energy Regulation Commission and the National Renewable Energy Board, the government will be able to keep a watchful eye on these prices to keep an optimum balance between the interests of our consumers and preserving the environment for future generations.”

“What we want is simple: we want to do away with the perception that a cleaner future and affordable power prices are conflicting ideas. Our objective is for our people to experience both. And what we will do is ease into these emerging technologies so that their economic impacts will not cause a shock to our consumers. We want to pave the way for the maturity of our renewable energy sources such that we can provide predictable, affordable, and fair electricity pricing for each and every Filipino,” the President said.

He appealed to the nationalist in every Filipino to join this government effort to ensure its success.

“This is a twenty-year program we are launching, so allow me to appeal to everyone here: be involved – from paying attention to curbing your own carbon footprint, to aspiring to become the next big green entrepreneur. Any way that you can help your country would be welcome assistance as well. What each and every one of you does count,” the President said.

“What we need to do is to fulfill our roles in the collective task of rebuilding this country. The daylight has finally dawned, and it is our duty as Filipinos to make certain we walk under its guidance. I especially invite the youth, who are the future of the Philippines, to join this government and their elders, as we all help make this daylight a continuing reality, so that no smog, no darkness will ever enshroud us again,” he said. (PCOO/PIA9-BST)




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