Nuclear power: Philippines energy future

In the energetic hub of Clark Freeport Zone, Central Luzon, Congressman Mark Cojuangco’s vision for a sustainable future is prominent. As Chair of the Special Committee on Nuclear Energy at the House of Representatives, Cojuangco champions nuclear power as a key element of the Philippines’ energy strategy.

With global attention on sustainability, Cojuangco’s advocacy for nuclear energy is timely and essential. He focuses on educating the public about nuclear power’s potential to ensure energy security and environmental responsibility, aiming to guide the nation towards sustainable development.
Cojuangco’s commitment has received significant recognition, notably the American Nuclear Society’s Distinguished Public Service Award. This honor underscores his contributions and visionary approach to energy policy.

Supporting Cojuangco’s initiatives is Alpas Pinas, the leading organization in nuclear energy education and advocacy in the Philippines. Under Gayle Certeza, a leader with a diverse background, Alpas Pinas shapes national discourse on nuclear power.

The collaboration between leaders like Cojuangco and Certeza is crucial for a sustainable energy future. Their combined expertise drives the momentum needed to transition the Philippines towards cleaner energy.

The forum highlighted the Philippines’ heavy reliance on fossil fuels, which make up 75% of its energy mix, primarily coal, gas, and oil. This dependency raises environmental and energy security concerns, with imported coal costing around US $5.4 billion in 2022.

Fossil fuel pollution has severe global impacts. A Harvard study linked over 8 million deaths in 2018 to fossil fuel pollution, stressing the need for cleaner energy sources. The Philippines must address these environmental and health crises in its energy strategy.

Renewable energy sources like wind and solar, though important, face challenges due to their intermittent nature, which requires fossil fuel backups. Significant investments, such as Bill Gates’ $1 billion in renewables, highlight the limitations of current battery technology for large-scale storage.
Nuclear energy offers a reliable alternative, providing consistent baseload electricity essential for stable energy supply. Despite historical safety concerns, nuclear energy is statistically one of the safest forms of energy production, with far fewer fatalities than fossil fuels.

Modern solutions address nuclear waste concerns. Companies like Deep Isolation are developing safe geological repositories for waste disposal. Compared to the vast waste from fossil fuel combustion, nuclear waste is contained and manageable, presenting a smaller environmental risk.

Balancing various energy sources, nuclear energy stands out for its reliability and low-carbon footprint. It ensures a steady energy supply and significantly reduces greenhouse gas emissions, aiding climate change mitigation.

The economic benefits of nuclear energy are substantial.

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