The Philippines, being one of the world’s most vulnerable countries to climate change, should prioritize the promotion of renewable energy as part of its efforts to attract foreign investments. This sentiment was expressed by US Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and Environment, Jose Fernandez, during an online interview. Fernandez commended the Marcos administration for their eagerness to promote clean energy in the Philippines, recognizing the opportunity it presents for attracting investments and achieving a clean energy future.
Fernandez emphasized that addressing the country’s power and electricity concerns is crucial in attracting foreign investments. The government is well aware that these concerns act as a constraint to investment, particularly for energy-intensive industries such as critical mineral companies, mining companies, and semiconductor manufacturers. By leveraging the Philippines’ abundant wind and solar resources, the government can transform this vulnerability into an advantage. Fernandez noted that the government is already considering ways to promote renewable energy, as it understands the potential economic benefits it can bring.
During his visit to the Philippines, Fernandez had discussions with concerned energy officials to address these issues. He highlighted the importance of renewable energy in mitigating climate change and emphasized the need to cooperate in this area. The Philippines has ample wind and solar resources, making it an ideal location for renewable energy projects. By promoting clean energy, the country can not only attract foreign investments but also contribute to global efforts in combating climate change.
One of the challenges the Philippines faces is the cost of electricity. Fernandez mentioned that the price of electricity in the Philippines is twice as expensive as what he pays in New York City. This high cost is a constraint that the government is aware of and actively working to address. By investing in renewable energy, the country can reduce its reliance on expensive fossil fuels and transition to a more sustainable and cost-effective energy system.
Fernandez’s visit to the Philippines was part of a larger effort to strengthen economic cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region. The United States expressed its commitment to working closely with the Philippines, Vietnam, and South Korea on various issues of common concern, including energy, health, environment, and food security. This collaboration will not only benefit the participating countries but also contribute to regional stability and prosperity.
In conclusion, promoting renewable energy in the Philippines is essential for attracting foreign investments and addressing the country’s power and electricity concerns. The government recognizes the economic potential of clean energy and is eager to cooperate with international partners in this area. By leveraging its abundant wind and solar resources, the Philippines can transform its vulnerability to climate change into a competitive advantage. Through close collaboration with the United States and other countries in the region, the Philippines can achieve its clean energy goals and contribute to global efforts in combating climate change.
Source: The Manila Times