CEED on the Inauguration Statement of Newly-elected President Marcos Jr. and Energy

Reacting to the speech given by Ferdinand Marcos Jr. when he was sworn in as 17th Philippine President, Gerry Arances, executive director of sustainability think-tank Center for Energy, Ecology, and Development, said:

“Newly elected president Marcos Jr. did not lie when he said he did not talk much in his campaign. His supporters and critics alike were forced to wonder how the call for unity will be transformed into concrete plans and policies towards economic progress and Filipinos’ recovery from current crises. In the energy sector, his team’s clean energy pledges would have been all well and good – except ‘clean’ still meant destructive energy from nuclear and gas. Amid skyrocketing prices of fuel and basic commodities burdening Filipinos, the absence of proper energy plans meant no relief was in sight.

On his first day on the job, Marcos Jr. finally made clear that he intends to seriously undermine the potential of our abundant indigenous renewable energy in helping solve ecological, economic, and energy security woes. Claims of needing more fossil fuels while ‘fossil-fuel free’ technologies have yet to be able to power economies are a rehash of the same old excuses of past administrations. The government will once again be in collusion with these industries in tying Filipinos to decades of costly and polluting power. In seeking to ramp up the use of oil, gas, and other fossil fuels, Marcos Jr. forces us to struggle for sufficient fuel supply, suffer volatile prices, and contribute to worse climate change.

Meanwhile, the new president continues to hail the Bangui wind turbines as an achievement of his – falsely, as it was a private project funded by the World Bank – as if renewables serve no other purpose than showing off as a sustainability trophy. Marcos Jr. did touch on climate mitigation and recognized that countries like ours face a catastrophic climate future if no proper action is made, but this means little for as long as he ignores the need to transform the energy sector towards sustainability, affordability, and stability through an unprecedented advance of renewables.”