DoE calls for fair treatment of poor countries in transition to green-energy technology

ENERGY Secretary Raphael P.M. Lotilla called on developed countries to ensure a “just” transition to green technology for poorer countries, citing the need for low-cost financing and technology transfers.

“We hope our development partners and countries like Sweden would assist us not only in making the private sector share technology and access to innovation, but also to assist the Philippines in terms of securing favorable financing that would allow us to build the necessary infrastructure,” Mr. Lotilla said at an energy forum the Department of Energy (DoE) co-organized with the Embassy of Sweden.

Mr. Lotilla said technology is constantly developing, leaving the government the task of selecting which tech is most suitable for the Philippines’ green energy transition.

“First of all, green transition for a developing country like the Philippines must be a just transition; it must be a fair transition and therefore we must avoid transferring the burden of climate transition to an already overburdened Philippine population,” he said. 

Mr. Lotilla said that aside from harnessing indigenous renewable energy resources, the Philippines must also turn to liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a transition fuel while evaluating the various forms of technology available.

“We have to take full advantage of all sources of energy that are currently in place and to use them in a wise manner. At the same time, we need to be able to transition to a cleaner environment. And this we address by making sure that the additional capacities that we need will be sourced from renewable and greener sources of energy,” Mr. Lotilla said. 

He said that the Philippines cannot as yet transition away from coal-fired power plants, though the government must prepare for coal-fired energy to be phased out eventually.

“There is no denying that we need them still. But we have placed them in a trajectory (in which), clearly, over time, they are going to be replaced.,” Mr. Lotilla said. — Ashley Erika O. Jose