Members of coal-affected communities, electric consumers, climate justice and environmental groups stormed the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) yesterday, conducted simultaneous actions in different areas in the country, to press Secretary Roy Cimatu and other local officials to put a halt on the country’s ‘coal obsession’ and listen to the demand of the 89% of the Filipinos who do not want energy to be sourced from dirty coal.
This is based on the recently released Pulse Asia survey that says almost nine out of 10 Filipinos want to shift to renewable energy source.
Groups participated in national day of action against coal said that the DENR’s current position on the said issue does not only worsen the current state of our environment but also enables a rise in electricity prices all over the country.
In Mindanao, electricity prices soared up as new five coal plants were recently inaugurated. The rise in electricity prices convinced majority of the residents of the island to shift to renewable energy.
Currently, electricity cost in some parts in Mindanao is P1 to P3 higher than the price in Metro Manila amounting to almost P13/kWh in Ozamiz City and around P11/kWh in South Cotabato.
Gerry Arances, Executive Director of the Center for Energy, Ecology and Development urges the government to execute what is being told by the numbers and by the communities affected by the said impacts.
“All stars are aligned. The rate of disapproval of using coal as our source of energy is clearly equal to the intensity of the impacts and sufferings of the people. It is about time that we shift to clean, affordable and renewable energy that can aid people to live their lives better free of high prices and worsening health conditions,” concluded Arances. (pr)