OZAMIZ CITY -- Accelerating the exploration and development of oil, gas and coal resources is a top priority thrust under the Philippine Energy Plan (PEP) in the next 20 years, the National Government said.

The PEP aims to ensure energy security by ensuring the best energy choices for a better quality of life through an effective implementation of energy sector reforms following a social mobilization and cross-sector monitoring system.

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Michael O. Sinocruz, Chief of Planning Division, Department of Energy (DOE) said there is a need to intensify the development and utilization of renewable and environment-friendly alternative energy resources and technologies and enhance energy efficiency and conservation.

"There is also a need to put in place long-term reliable power supply and improve transmission and systems, secure vital energy infrastructure and facilities and maintain a competitive energy investment climate," he said.

As to the implementation of energy reforms, the PEP will recommend amendments to existing energy laws and advocate the passage of new and necessary laws.

Sinocruz said the DOE is conducting an inventory of other potential sources of natural gas and its application to establish a supply base for its exploration and development, as oil and gas will continue to be the major energy for transport.

Establishment of environmental standards, however, is very necessary to improve social acceptability and improve the prospects of petroleum exploration, Sinocruz added. (RCA/PIA)