The ardent push for green energy has been in motion since the start of the millennium.
Though it proves progress for the movement has seen rough terrain, the slow and steady rise in renewables continue to pave the way for a greener future.
Compared to global energy consumption, renewable energy promises so much but too few have made the shift as a majority of the world’s population, governments, and industries still rely heavily on finite energy supplies such as fossil fuels.
In a report from Our World in Data, the global demand on resources like crude oil and coal made up 80% of the total global energy consumption back in 2016. During this year, only 10% were consumed from biofuels while nuclear and renewable energy such as hydro, wind, solar, and geothermal, made up 5% respectively.
In the Philippines, renewable energy shares a mere 10.54% of the primary energy sources as of 2019. This has taken a dip since 2012 where it was at 14.99% as per Our World in Data on BP Statistical Review of World Energy done in 2020.
However, due to the negative impact fossil fuels and other exhaustible energy resources have had on the populace and the environment, especially how it has tremendously worsened global warming, the perception and patronage of renewable energy has changed drastically in various states and territories as of late.
Renewable energy (RE) now plays a major role in world economies, not only because it offers an infinite source of energy, but also technologies that make renewable energy cheaper have been made available.
Exciting times are upon us as the transition towards the fastest-growing energy source is gaining traction. Even third-world countries such as the Philippines can reap the benefits of driving down carbon emissions while catapulting economic growth in the process.
The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions says that by 2040, renewables are expected to make up 45% of the global electricity generation output. The likely rise in renewable energy consumption will come from Water (hydropower and hydrokinetic), Wind, Solar (power and hot water), Biomass (biofuel and biopower), and Geothermal (power and heating).
The Philippines has always been blessed with an abundance of renewable energy resources, even geothermal power which is only present in countries near the Pacific Ring of Fire.
According to the Department of Energy, RE is an essential part of the country’s low emissions development strategy and is vital to addressing the challenges of climate change, energy security, and access to energy.
But the move to decarbonize our economy does not only involve the government. The journey towards a greener future starts with individuals and institutions focused on one goal: merging sustainable development with the environment in mind.
In fact, the building with the world’s first EDGE Zero Carbon certification can be found in Metro Manila.
Arthaland Century Pacific Tower in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, has been recognized by the World Bank Group’s International Finance Corp. (IFC) for projected savings of 45 percent in energy, 64 percent in water, and 34 percent in embodied energy in materials.
Coca-Cola, on the other hand, has established a holistic sustainability practice: their whole value chain, from manufacturing to distribution, has systems in place reducing their environmental impact.
According to its website https://www.energy.com.ph/shift-to-renewable-energy, they are only two of the many firms that have partnered with the Philippines’ geothermal leader and premier renewable energy company, Energy Development Corporation (EDC), to do good for their businesses and for the planet. Most of these firms are now powered by geothermal or Geo 24/7, which provides far more benefits than both fossil fuel and even other renewable energy sources with its ability to provide clean, reliable, stable baseload or 24/7 power. EDC has been harnessing power mainly from geothermal sources for over 40 years now.
In truth, any power customer designated by the ERC as part of the contestable market, or those that have an average monthly electricity consumption of at least 500KW, can now purchase electricity directly from licensed Retail Electricity Suppliers like EDC.
This benefit of having a Retail Competition and Open Access (RCOA), thanks to the Department of Energy (DOE), allows these so- called contestable customers to decide which electricity suppliers to source power from. The establishment of RCOA is mandated by the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (EPIRA).
This means that qualified power consumers can now take concrete steps not only to lower their electricity cost but more so to lower their carbon footprint as their contribution to fighting climate change by simply choosing where to buy electricity.
Soon, even customers with an average power consumption of at least 100KW will also be able to power their business better with low carbon renewable energy like geothermal once the DOE gives the green light for the Green Energy Option Program.
According to EDC, by using clean, reliable, cost-competitive renewable energy, “you can create a better future for your business and for our planet.”
It might just be your first important step to a decarbonized world.