UniTeam to fast-track nuclear energy adoption to lower electricity rates in PH

8 March 2022

PRESIDENTIAL candidate Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr. and his running-mate Inday Sara Duterte vowed on Friday to support and expedite the country's adoption of nuclear power when they win in the upcoming 2022 polls.

The UniTeam bets were reacting to President Rodrigo Duterte's signing of Executive Order (EO) No. 164, which details the country's policy on nuclear energy in consonance with the country's economic, political, social, and environmental goals.

The President signed the EO last Feb. 28, 2022, but it was only made publicly available on Thursday.

The formidable tandem believes that incorporating nuclear power in the Philippines' energy mix would lower electricity rates and help secure a steady power source.

"The President's executive order is a good springboard for the next administration to pursue its nuclear energy objectives.  Our vision for the country is to have at least one nuclear power plant so we can finally produce cheap energy and for us to lower our electricity rates," the UniTeam said.

Based on the Department of Energy (DOE) Power Statistics 2020 data, the country's top power generation sources are coal at 57.2%, natural gas at 19.2%, geothermal at 10.6%, and hydro at 7.1%. 

The Philippines currently has the third-highest electricity rate in Asian region at P10/kWh after Japan and Singapore, according to data from 2019.

In a previous radio interview, Marcos stressed the serious need for the country to look into the use of nuclear power and that it should not be politicized.

"We really have to look at nuclear power.  ‘Wag natin i-politika [Let's not politicize it].  Once again, follow the science," Marcos asserted.

To recall, Marcos also previously said that the government should study a South Korean firm's offer to rehabilitate the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP).

“Let’s look at it again. Mayroon tayong BNPP. Mayroon ‘yang tinatawag na mga sister plants kasi Westinghouse ang gumawa dito sa Pilipinas. Mayroon silang ginawa sa Korea na ganun din na pareho,” he said.

“Halos pareho ‘yung design lahat naman ‘yan custom-made pero ‘yung mga basic technologies na gagamitin sa BNPP ginawa nila sa Korea ay napakaganda,” Marcos added.

The 621-megawatt capacity BNPP was supposed to solve the country's energy deficit problem during the time of former President Ferdinand Marcos but was mothballed by the Aquino administration.

The younger Marcos has also called for the increased use of renewable energy technologies such as wind, solar and geothermal to complement the current power generation sources.

During his tenure as Ilocos Norte governor, the famed Bangui Wind Farm was inaugurated and still supplies the entire province with 40% of its electricity requirements.

-30-

FILIPINO VERSION

UniTeam suportado ang paggamit ng nuclear energy para sa mas murang kuryente

PABIBILISIN nina presidential candidate Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr. at kanyang running-mate na si Inday Sara Duterte ang proseso upang maisaayos at agarang magamit ang nuclear power sa paglikha ng kuryente sa bansa sakaling manalo sila sa darating na 2022 elections.

Ito ang naging tugon ng UniTeam sa paglagda ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte sa Executive Order (EO) No. 164, na nagdedetalye ng mga magiging pamantayan ng bansa sa paggamit ng nuclear energy habang isinasaalang-alang ang mga layunin sa ekonomiya, pulitika, panlipunan, at kapaligiran ng bansa.

Nilagdaan ni Pangulong Duterte ang nasabing EO noong Pebrero 28, 2022, ngunit isinapubliko lamang nitong Huwebes.

Naniniwala sina Marcos at Inday Sara na ang pagsama ng nuclear power sa energy mix ng Pilipinas ay magpapababa ng singil sa kuryente at magbibigay din ng maaasahang mapagkukunan ng enerhiya.

"The President's executive order is a good springboard for the next administration to pursue its nuclear energy objectives. Our vision for the country is to have at least one nuclear power plant so we can finally produce cheap energy and for us to lower our electricity rates," sabi ng UniTeam.

Batay sa datos ng Department of Energy (DOE) Power Statistics 2020, ang ilan sa pinakamalalaking pinagkukunan ng enerhiya ng bansa ay coal sa 57.2%, natural gas sa 19.2%, geothermal sa 10.6%, at hydro sa 7.1%.

Ang Pilipinas ay kasalukuyang ikatlo sa may pinakamataas na rate ng kuryente sa Asya na may halagang P10/kWh kasunod ng mga bansang Japan at Singapore, ayon sa datos mula 2019.

Sa isang panayam sa radyo, binigyang-diin ni Marcos ang seryosong pangangailangan ng bansa na ikunsidera ang paggamit ng nuclear power at nagsabing hindi ito dapat pinupulitika.

"We really have to look at nuclear power. ‘Wag natin i-pulitika [Let's not politicize it]. Once again, follow the science," ayon kay Marcos.

Matatandaan din na unang sinabi ni Marcos na dapat pag-aralan ng pamahalaan ang panukala ng isang Korean firm na i-rehabilitate ang Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP).

“Let’s look at it again. Mayroon tayong BNPP. Mayroon ‘yang tinatawag na mga sister plants kasi Westinghouse ang gumawa dito sa Pilipinas. Mayroon silang ginawa sa Korea na ganun din na pareho. Halos pareho ‘yung design lahat naman ‘yan custom-made pero ‘yung mga basic technologies na gagamitin sa BNPP ginawa nila sa Korea ay napakaganda,” dagdag pa ni Marcos Jr.

Ang BNPP na may 621-megawatts na kapasidad ay inaasahan sanang lulutas sa problema sa kakulangan sa enerhiya ng bansa noong panahon ni dating Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos ngunit pinigilan itong mag-operate ng administrasyong Cory Aquino.

Nanawagan din si Marcos Jr. para sa mas malawakang paggamit ng renewable energy technologies tulad ng wind, solar at geothermal para madagdagan ang mga mapagkukunan ng enerhiya ng bansa.

Ang sikat na Bangui Wind Farm, na pinasinayaan sa panahon ng panunungkulan ni Marcos bilang gobernador ng Ilocos Norte ay patuloy pa ring nagsusuplay ng 40% ng pangangailangan sa kuryente ng buong lalawigan.

-30-