Energy conservation bill up for Duterte signature, says DOE

  • Shortly after he announced that the EE&C bill is with the Office of the President, DOE Usec. Felix William B. Fuentebella (4th from left) joins PE2 president Alexander Ablaza (leftmost), DOE-EUMB Director Cesar G. dela Fuente III (2nd from left), DOE-EECD Division Chief Artemio P. Habitan (rightmost) and other DOE and EU-ASEP staff during the RE EE Philippines exhibitions on 21 March 2019. (PE2 photo)
    Shortly after he announced that the EE&C bill is with the Office of the President, DOE Usec. Felix William B. Fuentebella (4th from left) joins PE2 president Alexander Ablaza (leftmost), DOE-EUMB Director Cesar G. dela Fuente III (2nd from left), DOE-EECD Division Chief Artemio P. Habitan (rightmost) and other DOE and EU-ASEP staff during the RE EE Philippines exhibitions on 21 March 2019. (PE2 photo)

The measure which aims to institutionalize energy conservation and efficiency in the country has been transmitted to Malacañang for President Rodrigo Duterte’s signature, the Department of Energy (DOE) said Thursday.

In a keynote speech of Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi delivered by Energy Undersecretary and spokesperson Felix William Fuentebella during the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Exhibition in Pasay City, the Energy chief said the DOE has received official communication from the Palace that the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act has been transmitted by Congress to the Office of the President. 

“Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act is being readied for signature of the President,” Cusi said.

“As of yesterday, I was informed by the Office of the Executive Secretary that the bill has officially been transmitted to Malacañang last Friday,” he said.

In January, the bicameral conference committee approved the reconciled version of House bill No. 8629 and Senate bill No. 1531 — the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act.

The measure took three decades before it was ratified. It was first filed in 1988 and since then, has been repeatedly filed in every Congress.

The Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act aims to standardize energy efficiency and conservation measures in the country by regulating the use of energy efficient technologies in buildings.

The measure provides for the Local Energy Efficiency and Conservation Plan, as well as the inclusion of Energy Conserving Design on Buildings in the issuance of building permits.

An Interagency Energy Efficiency and Conservation Committee will also be created for the implementation of the Government Energy Management Program, which aims to reduce government agencies' consumption of electricity and petroleum products.

“We take a proactive stance as we prepare for its implementing rules and regulations,” Cusi said in a speech read by Fuentebella.

In a separate interview, Fuentebella told reporters that the DOE is targeting to finish the act's implementing rules and regulations in four months after the measure was signed into law.

"We cannot preempt what the President will do pero we're confident," Fuentebella said.

Since its official transmission to Malacañang, the bill will count 30 days before it lapses into law unless vetoed by the President. Once signed by the President, it will take 15 days before it takes effect.

“When the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act will be put in place, it will be a game changer because it will make impacts on the big issues that we face like the reduction of energy use, increased energy security, address fuel dependency to drive economic activities...,” Cusi said.

Also an important component of law is setting up of categories for establishments as to what energy saving practices they will adopt depending on the level of their energy consumption.

“It requires the employment of energy conservation officer or a certified energy manager to oversee the implementation of energy management system and the company,” Cusi said.

According to forecasts under the energy roadmap, demand for energy would rise by 80 percent from 2017 to 2040 at the rate of 3.5 percent per year. 

"Maganda doon sa batas is merong role ang national government agencies kasama diyan ang sariling disiplina, kasama diyan kung ano 'yung mga dapat gawin para maipluwensiyahan para magkaroon din ng disiplina, ano 'yung pwedeng ibigay na fiscal at non-fiscal incentives para sa mga nagpa-practice ng energy efficiency and conservation," Fuentebella said.

"Another thing is ano 'yung role ng local government units, ano 'yung pwedeng gawin na training para sa mga energy efficiency and conservation managers and officers, ano yung pwedeng penalties kapag hindi sumunod ang mga establishments or dini-distort 'yung mga labels kasi may energy efficiency sa mga sasakyan, gadgets, appliances, buildings so malawak siya na bill so talagang inisa-isa," the Energy official said. — RSJ, GMA News
 

Written/Posted by: 
Ted Cordero

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