Senator Win Gatchalian on Thursday said that a common agenda of promoting sustainable energy development and environmental responsibility will continue to ensure strong ties of friendship between the Philippines and key European allies, despite controversies over the past year which had caused strained relations between the countries.
The senator’s remarks came after completing a two-week sojourn to Germany and France, two of the most influential countries in Europe, to study renewable energy and climate change policies.
“The Philippines and its European allies are united by a common vision for a ‘low carbon future’. Despite disagreements on other issues from time to time, I am confident that our governments will continue to work together on research and development initiatives which will help bring this noble vision to life,” said Gatchalian.
The senator, who also chairs the Senate Committee on Energy, explained that the aggressive push among European nations to transition from fossil fuels and nuclear power to renewable energy sources is encouraging intensive investments in RE technologies. These investments will precipitate faster technological developments, which would in turn reduce power costs sooner rather than later.
“Maintaining strong ties with European nations will encourage knowledge and technology transfers from Europe to the Philippines during the renewable energy revolution currently happening over there. These transfers will help Philippine energy players produce clean energy at much more affordable prices in the long term,” Gatchalian explained.
However, Gatchalian stressed that, “as a developing nation with an industrializing economy, the Philippines should adopt a balanced approach in crafting its energy mix.”
“The key is to find the energy mix which will provide the fuel needed to drive inclusive economic growth, while at the same ensuring that the Philippines will be able to uphold its international obligations in reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” Gatchalian added.