Coal plants ordered to adhere environment standards

THE Department of Energy (DOE) will issue a Department Order to coal plant companies to adhere to the guidelines provided by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

DOE Undersecretary Benito Ranque bared this during the Power Patrol Seminar on Energy Efficiency and Conservation for Households at Almendras Gym Davao City recreation center Tuesday, October 4.

Ranque assured they will observe the instruction of Environment Secretary Regina Lopez to protect the environment while doing their duty in providing and ensuring sufficient energy of the country.

"We will make sure that we will follow the guidelines especially issued by Secretary Gina Lopez. We will follow it and make solutions without sacrificing the requirement for energy of our country and the consumers," Ranque said.

Ranque also said mostly, coal energy is being used by power plant companies because it is cheaper compared to other sources of energy.

If these companies offering coal energy will be subject for closure, Ranque said the country will possibly experience power shortage.

"We are not yet prepared," Ranque said.

Ranque added Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi has already talked with Secretary Lopez to address the matter gradually and closely coordinate with the DENR to address the concerns about environmental effects of coal.

Some of the coal companies are using a technology to avoid carbon emission, which is considered as the primary cause of climate change.

With this technology, there will no longer be black smoke emitted and it would be safer for the environment.

Ranque, however, said if this will be applied by most companies, most likely, the cost of electricity will increase.

"If there is already a clean coal technology, you can no longer expect that it is cheaper, it would probably add on to the bill of the consumers," Ranque said.

Other countries are using this kind of technology and in the country, however, only a few are using it due to its high cost.


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