Climate group urges Duterte to prioritize shift to renewable energy


In marking the third anniversary of supertyphoon Yolanda (International name: Haiyan), a green coalition is calling on President Rodrigo Duterte to prioritize the shift to renewable energy to decrease the possibility of extreme weather events.

The Philippine Movement for Climate Justice said that the government should implement a moratorium in issuing permits for new coal power plant applications.

They also said that the administration should cancel all coal plants in the pipeline, and implement a rehabilitation program for communities and ecosystems affected by coal plants and mines.

The network of 130 organizations stressed the need to provide an alternative livelihood for affected workers in the transition to renewable energy.

Coal, among the energy sources in the country, emits the most greenhouse gas, PMCJ said in a press conference on Thursday.

23 coal – fired power plants exist in the country, Atty Aaron Pedrosa, who leads PMCJ’s energy working group, said. While 36 more are in the works – on paper or on land.

Over 150 countries – including the Philippines – are set to reduce carbon emissions by 70 percent by 2030 under the Paris Agreement signed by the previous administration.

Duterte has refused to honor the said agreement saying that it will hinder the Philippines’ industrialization.

Read: Duterte: Climate change pact to hinder PH industrialization

“They [developed countries] want us to slow down so I have a rift with them,” Duterte said. “I do not agree with the formula or equation because it is not fair.”

The Philippines has yet to ratify the said agreement on climate change.

Read: Change has come? Duterte may ratify Paris Agreement – Palace official