JV Ejercito: PH needs to establish more power plants

Sen. Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito NELSON ORTIZ/SENATEN PRIB

MANILA, Philippines — Senator JV Ejercito on Wednesday pressed the national government to “focus on the energy sector,” emphasizing the need to establish more power plants in the country.

In a press conference, Ejercito said the country’s power plants should be proportionate to the growing number of Philippine population and businesses.

“The administration really has to focus on the energy sector. We need to establish new power plants because our population is not shrinking, industries are growing, business is growing,” said Ejercito.

READ: Nationwide red, yellow alerts raised as power supply further thins

“We have old power plants. We also have new power plants but these remain very few and I would say at the rate we are going while we are trying to catch up with the neighbors—we need more power plants to ensure that we have a steady baseload,” he added.

The senator’s remarks came in light of the continued power woes in the country. With power supply running low nationwide, the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines on April 24 placed Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao under red or yellow alerts.

READ: Ejercito revs up push for nuclear power; Hontiveros cries a ‘step backward’

Focus on energy, infrastructure

According to Ejercito, the national government should prioritize infrastructure and energy, above anything else.

The senator said anything that would give the country a stable and reasonable power supply is good.

“I think it has to be a mix of a little [bit] of everything. Renewable and baseload energy. That can be coal-fired power plants,  liquefied natural gas, or even nuclear [power plants] in the future,” he said.

He noted that while renewable energy is “very popular and environment friendly,” it tends to be intermittent. This, according to Ejercito is why it has to be a mix of renewable and baseload power plants.