Senator Nancy Binay urged the Department of Energy to set a clear policy direction on nuclear energy as a source of the country’s electricity needs.
Binay, vice chair of the Senate Committee on Energy, said stakeholders should be welcome to a dialogue on plans to open the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, adding that the Senate can help in formulating the policy for nuclear energy.
The senator added that it is a good opportunity for talks to decide on the use of the BNPP, as the country still allots budget for the maintenance of the facility.
On Friday, Binay, together with Senator Sherwin Gatchalian and Joseph Victor Ejercito visited the mothballed nuclear power plant in Morong, Bataan.
Gatchalian said that he prefers the establishment of a new power plant instead of reviving the 30-year-old BNPP, which has several issues of safety and acceptability slapped on the power plant’s surface.
Several groups have pointed out the 1986 Chernobyl and 2011 Fukushima disasters as examples of nuclear plant accidents, questioning its safety in the country.
More than half of the country’s energy mix is dependent on fossil fuels, 30 percent comes from natural gas plants and 10 percent is generated from renewable energy sources like geothermal, wind, hydro-power, and solar energy.
With the country’s growing economy, the energy demand is expected to rise to 30,000 MW by 2030, an additional 1,100 MW is needed yearly, the Department of Energy said.