Cusi: Ph not ready for carbon tax

alfonso cusi 1

The Philippines is not yet ready to implement carbon taxes just yet since it will only make the country’s power sector uncompetitive, according to Energy Sec. Alfonso Cusi.

The secretary pointed out at a virtual forum on Tuesday imposing such a measure to reduce carbon dioxide emissions would not yet be favorable for the country because it is still building its own capacity to meet power demand and ensure sufficient reserve.

Since Cusi assumed office in 2016, the Department of Energy (DOE) has taken on a technology-neutral stance in building energy capacity amid rising power demand. This is why the government is welcoming investments in all potential energy sources.

Cusi added that the country is also not ready for carbon tax since coal takes up 48 percent of the country’s power generation mix.

A report by global market research firm Fitch Solutions published last January said that coal will still be the Philippines’ dominant power generation source in the coming years, even as its growth is expected to slow down due to the government’s moratorium on the building of new plants.

Instead of carbon tax, Cusi said the country looks at nuclear as a new energy source to meet the country’s power demand. 

The DOE-chaired Nuclear Energy Inter-Agency Committee has submitted a policy proposal to Pres. Rodrigo Duterte that would include nuclear in the country’s power generation mix.

Cusi also said that the DOE wishes to see more investors in the country who advocate for renewable energy.