Bringing back the use of clean energy in Mindanao

In a report by the Department of Energy in 2021, 31% of installed energy capacity of Mindanao comes from renewable energy sources as of 2020. This was way lower than the 2011 data, where 65% of the total power generation mix in the island came from clean power.

Over the years, the continued power supply problems paved the way for oil and coal-based power sources to be the primary sources of electricity, which now constitute 68% of installed energy capacity. 

Reaching the poorest through Mindanao REACH

To promote renewable energy in the region, the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA), Ateneo de Davao University's Mindanao Renewable Energy Research and Development Center, and PEF inked a memorandum of agreement (MOA) to establish the Mindanao Renewable Energy Advocacy and Coordination Hub or Mindanao REACH on June 24, 2022.

The Mindanao REACH seeks to establish a platform for multi-stakeholder, grassroots-based strategies of promoting renewable energy in poor communities which are underserved and unserved by traditional grid-based electricity. 

The hub will also advocate measures that would promote RE to revise fossil-dependence on Mindanao, electrify off-grid communities to attain inclusive growth and provide access to information relating to RE. 

“We intend to make the center a venue for knowledge sharing, capacity building, and advocacy initiatives to push for renewable energy transition and ultimately address poverty,” MinDa Secretary Maria Belen Acosta said during the ceremonial signing of the MOA.

PEF Executive Director Roberto Calingo meanwhile emphasized the need to establish the hub with rising fuel costs and exhausting fossil fuel reserves. 

“The need of having energy sufficiency together with food sufficiency has been more urgent,” he said. 

Also present in the ceremonial signing are Climate Change Commission Executive Director Robert Borje, MinDA Assistant Secretary Romeo Montenegro, and ADDU School of Engineering and Architecture Dean Dr. Randell Espina, representing ADDU President Fr. Joel Tabora.