DOE welcomes EO on nuclear power
by Philippine Resources - March 07, 2022
Photo credit: Shuttershock
The Department of Energy (DOE) has welcomed the signing of Executive Order 164, or the inclusion of nuclear power in the country’s energy mix, as this will address the high electricity rate and secure energy for the future.
“We thank the President for seeing merit in the DOE’s recommendation to consider integrating nuclear energy into our country’s energy mix. Since we want a stable, reliable, and sustainable energy resource, I believe that nuclear is the way to go,” DOE Secretary Alfonso Cusi said in a statement.
In a press conference Thursday, DOE Undersecretary Gerardo Erguiza Jr. said nuclear power is cheaper and cleaner than other sources of energy and will help the country in achieving energy security.
Erguiza, chairperson of the DOE Nuclear Energy Programme Implementing Organization (NEPIO), added that the EO provides four cornerstone approaches in developing the Nuclear Energy Program (NEP).
These include establishing a national policy on nuclear energy that could withstand changes in administration; legislative framework by institutionalizing the NEP; alignment with international standards in which the NEP will be formulated under the guidance of the International Atomic Agency; and public awareness and acceptability by conducting strong public consultation and information campaigns promoting scientific findings on the benefits of nuclear energy use.
“Adopting a nuclear program is not just about constructing nuclear power plants. It is a matter of energy and national security. Should it be decided in the future that the Philippines is fit and finally ready to embark on its nuclear energy journey then, we would be able to look back and appreciate this landmark issuance,” Erguiza said.
Drawing away from Bataan plant
Although the EO still includes the potential of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) in the NEP, the DOE official said the EO is drawing away from the old but unused power plant.
“We recognized the fact that BNPP was very much polarized,” Erguiza said, adding that the policy has focused on whether or not to include nuclear power in the energy mix and not on the rehabilitation of BNPP which received widespread safety concerns in the past.
The BNPP is designed for two nuclear reactors with a capacity of 650 megawatts each, he said.
Erguiza said the country is in talks with Russia, South Korea, and the United States on the use of small modular reactor (SMR) technology.
Cusi and other DOE officials are set to travel to the US to seal a deal on SMR study.
Erguiza said the policy will also help the government to pursue new power installations across the country.
There were around 15 locations identified even in the 1980s that are viable for nuclear power– Bataan, Cagayan, Quezon, Puerto Princesa, Negros Occidental, General Santos, Zamboanga del Norte, and Sulu.
Erguiza said the industry has learned from the past accidents globally involving nuclear power plants, such as the Three Mile Island nuclear disaster in the US in 1979, the Chernobyl accident in 1986, and the Fukushima disaster in 2011.
He said the new technologies on nuclear power “has almost been perfected” over the years. By Kris Crismundo
Articl courtesy of the Philippine News Agency
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Marcelle P. Villegas - September 01, 2021
The 7th PH-EITI report, industry outlook transparency for oil, gas and mineral resources (Part 1)
The PH-EITI National Conference 2021 was held last July 29 with the theme "Resiliency in Transparency". PH-EITI or Philippine Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, is a government-led, multi-stakeholder initiative that implements EITI. The initiative started on 26 November 2013 under Executive Order No. 147, series of 2013. It is a government commitment first announced through EO No. 79, s. of 2012. The initiative aims to promote the open, accountable management and good governance of oil, gas and mineral resources industries. The three-hour webinar/conference featured various keynote speakers. “This is the second year that we are holding this meeting online due to the pandemic. This underscores the exceptional circumstance under which we have to operate into the foreseeable future. Nevertheless, I congratulate the EITI for its efforts to organize this national conference and produce an annual report despite all the challenges.” This was part of the Opening Remarks given by Hon. Carlos G. Dominguez, Secretary of Department of Finance.
Philippine Resources - September 02, 2021
Gov’t gets P1.7-B royalty payment from integrated energy firm
The government, through the Department of Energy (DOE), has received nearly PHP1.7 billion in royalty payment from integrated energy company Semirara Mining and Power Corp. (SMPC) for the second quarter of the year. In a statement Tuesday, SMPC said this is the highest quarterly royalty payment to the government after the firm recorded a revenue of PHP14.8 billion from April to June 2021. SMPC’s revenue in the second quarter of 2021 was supported by all-time high coal sales and higher average selling prices. Of the PHP1.7 billion turned over to the government, PHP1 billion will go to the national government that can be used to fund programs to fight coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). Some PHP666 million will go to local government units (LGUs) that host SMPC mine sites --PHP136 million for the province of Antique, PHP300 million for the municipality of Caluya, and PHP230 million for Barangay Semirara. Under the Local Government Code of 1991, host LGUs of petroleum, coal, geothermal, hydrothermal, and wind facilities shall receive 40 percent of the royalty proceeds. “The pandemic has taken a significant toll on our country. We hope that our contribution can help boost our government’s response against Covid-19,” SMPC president and chief operating officer Maria Cristina Gotianun said. SMPC is the country’s lone power producer that mines its own fuel source --integrating its coal mining and power operations to create a local value chain. Based on its website, SMPC generates 900 megawatts of power with an additional 1,200 MW of coal-fired power in the pipeline.
Philippine Resources - August 06, 2021
Law Establishing PH Energy Research Institute Inked
President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a law establishing the Philippine Energy Research and Policy Institute to enhance the country’s capability for energy research and policy development. Republic Act 11572, signed by Duterte on July 30, establishes the institute as an independent agency attached to the University of the Philippines (UP) with a separate budget from the premier university. Under the new law, an executive director to head the institute shall be a recognized expert in energy research and policy development with at least three years experience in the energy sector and shall have a strong organizational management background. The executive director, appointed by the UP President upon recommendation of the Executive Board, shall serve in full-time capacity for a term of five years which may be renewed. The institute’s Executive Board shall be composed of seven members comprised of the UP President as the ex-officio chairperson, and at least one representative from the fields of engineering, law, science, statistics, economics, social science, and public health, either from the academe or the private sector. Four members shall come from the academe, two members shall come from the private sector, while each representative shall come from different fields. Other members of the Executive Board shall be chosen by the UP President. Each member shall have a term of three years, which can be renewed for two more terms. The first two appointees from the academe and the first appointee from the private sector shall have a term of two years, which can be renewed for two more terms. The Executive Board may invite the secretaries of various government agencies as well as legitimate consumer and advocacy groups as resource persons during its meetings and deliberations. The institute shall support further education and training for its officers and employees to include advanced degree studies, short-term programs, online courses, and participation in conferences. Research papers, data, and other resources shall be made available to the public through its website. However, proprietary or confidential data and other resources cannot be posted or disclosed unless prior consent of the source or owner of such data and resources has been obtained by the requesting party. A Special Account in the General Fund (SAGP) for energy research, which shall be maintained and managed by the Bureau of Treasury, shall be established to support the research undertaken by the institute. The SAGF for energy research shall recognize and accept grants, contributions, and donations collected for energy research. A total of PHP200 million will be appropriated out of the General Appropriations Act (GAA) for the initial operating fund of the institute. Such amounts necessary for the sustainable operations of the institute shall be appropriated from the GAA based on the annual financial plan approved by the Executive Board and submitted to the Department of Budget and Management. Government agencies concerned are authorized to include in their respective annual budgets such necessary amounts as their contribution to the funding of certain research activities in the institute. Within 90 calendar days from the effectivity of the act, the UP, in consultation with the members of the academe, and other public and private stakeholders shall promulgate the necessary implementing rules and regulations of the act subject to the approval of the UP Board of Regents.
Philippine Resources - May 26, 2022
Legal framework needed for gov’t to invest in nuclear power plant
Department of Energy (DOE) Undersecretary Gerardo Erguiza Jr. said there is a need to amend the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) to enable the government to invest in nuclear power plants. This, as the incoming administration has expressed its support in considering a nuclear power plant to be part of the country’s energy mix. “As of now, the government does not have the ability to put up conventional nuclear power plant because the National Power Corp. does not have mandate on this,” Erguiza said in Filipino during the Laging Handa public briefing Wednesday. With the privatization of the power sector under the EPIRA, the government could not enter into power generation. “But we can align together, with the drafting or putting up of the regulatory framework, we can amend our laws to include the government among those that can fund a nuclear power plant,” he added. Erguiza said that based on studies of the Korean Hydro Nuclear Power Company of South Korea and ROSATOM of Russia, they have found out that the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) can still be rehabilitated. According to ROSATOM, an investment of around USD3 billion to USD4 billion is needed to revive the BNPP. Presumptive President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. earlier mentioned that part of his energy agenda is to revive the BNPP to become an additional source of clean and cheap power. On the other hand, Erguiza said the government can invest in power generation using small modular reactors, the latest nuclear energy technology, in missionary areas that are not connected to the grid.
Philippine Resources - May 26, 2022
Dutch gov’t backs SMC, Boskalis in P740 billion Bulacan Airport project
Photo credit: Palafox Dutch gov’t backs SMC, Boskalis in P740 billion Bulacan Airport project San Miguel Corporation (SMC) received its strongest support yet for its game-changing P740-billion New Manila International Airport (NMIA) project in Bulacan following the approval of the Dutch government of an export credit insurance (ECI) for the project’s land development phase. The approval comes after over a year of rigorous review of the project’s long-term environmental and social impact mitigation measures to ensure that the multi-billion project is done with sustainability in mind and aligned with the country’s climate ambitions. The Dutch government, represented by Atradius Dutch State Business (DSB), extended the ECI to Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V., to cover its EUR 1.5 billion contract for land development works at the airport project site in Bulakan, Bulacan. The NMIA project is the largest in Boskalis’ over 100-year history, and is also the largest export credit agency (ECA) insurance policy granted in the 90-year history of Atradius. SMC President and Chief Executive Officer Ramon S. Ang thanked the Dutch government for its support to NMIA, a project seen to catalyze sustainable economic growth for the Philippines, especially post-pandemic. It is seen to deliver over a million jobs to Filipinos. “This is a significant milestone not only for San Miguel and the NMIA project, but for the entire country. With this, we are closer to our dream of having a world-class, future-ready, and sustainably-built international gateway, proudly built by Filipinos for the Philippines. This also validates our work with Boskalis to ensure that this project is done right, and will provide long-term economic, environmental, and social benefits to our host communities and Bulacan province,” Ang said. In a statement posted on Boskalis’ international website, its CEO Peter Berdowski, said: “I am very pleased that all the hard work with a large team of experts has been successfully completed (today). For more than a year, we have worked intensively with Atradius DSB to ensure that the construction of the new airport will take place in a socially responsible manner.” He added: “In collaboration with Atradius DSB, the Dutch embassy, we succeeded in developing a broadly supported plan with an eye for the local community and the preservation of biodiversity. I would like to thank all those involved for their contribution to the positive decision of the State.” In the same statement, Atradius DSB Managing Director Bert Bruning said: “This project is unique on so many levels. Firstly, of course, as a very important contract for our client Boskalis, but also for us, as the largest ECA policy in our 90-year history,” he said. “In addition, I am proud of the fact that together with Boskalis and San Miguel, by keeping up the dialogue, we were able to ensure that the project is to meet international standards in the field of environmental and social conditions. In doing so, we have not only contributed to making this wonderful contract possible built also really made a difference together for the local communities and nature.” As part of the ECI process, a large group of experts from San Miguel, together with Boskalis and four renowned consultancy firms, conducted an extensive environmental and social impact assessment in accordance with the highest international standards. This process also included the conduct of impact analyses and compensation packages for adverse effects of the project. “This shows that the airport project and our environmental and social mitigation plans are not only sound, but robust and strong, given they can pass not only international standards but the exacting requirements of the Dutch government. It is another testament to the ability of Filipinos to be world-class,” Ang said. “We will continue to work with Atradius, the banks, experts, national and local government, and all stakeholders to ensure we will build this project in a sustainable manner and in compliance with the highest international environment and social standards,” Ang reaffirmed. added. The airport project will feature four parallel runways, a world-class terminal, and a modern and interlinked infrastructure network that includes expressways and railways. Article courtesy of San Miguel Corp
Philippine Resources - May 25, 2022
CTPCMC Allocates 7.7M for COVID-19 Initiatives
Article by: Roniel R. Arguillas - CTPCMC ICE Officer BAYANIHAN AMIDST THE COVID-19 BATTLE In order to protect and improve the lives of the people within the host and neighboring communities pursuant to Republic Act (RA) No. 11469 or the “Bayanihan to Heal as One Act”, CTP Construction and Mining Corporation or CTPCMC allocated 7.7 million pesos intended for the implementation of projects, programs, and activities (PPAs) on COVID-19 prevention. Through its Social Development and Management Program (SDMP) under Adlay Mining Project (AMP) and Dahican Nickel Project (DNP) the company implemented essential PPAs in the year 2021. The beneficiaries of PPAs were from the Host and Neighboring communities specifically Barangay Adlay, Barangay Dahican and Municipality of Carrascal. With an allocated budget of P2,060,803.78, a Covid-19 Assistance Center was put up to be the second line of support to the host communities if their existing Isolation Rooms have been fully occupied. The company’s employees and their dependents are to be prioritized in the center. The center is offering services which include free isolation room for those who are identified and confirmed as covid-19 patients, free vitamins, and over-the-counter drugs, 24/7 monitoring by health personnel and stand-by oxygen concentrators. Another PPA was the provision of 59 medical equipment and kits to Barangay Adlay. The provision included pulse oximeter, thermal scanner, LCD full digital ultrasound machine, hospital bed and refrigerator as vaccine storage. The turnover was done on December 14, 2021, held at Barangay Hall of Adlay. It was attended by Engr. Charlo R. Basadre CTPCMC Resident Mine Manager, Charid O. Cuadrillero ComRel Manager, Hon. Norberto O. Rubi Jr. Barangay Captain, and Raquel Bungcaras assigned nurse. “These are very essential and a huge help to the key front liners and to the people within the community.” Hon. Rubi said during the turnover. The company also provided two SDMP Emergency Response Vehicles for health-related emergencies.