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Miscellaneous

Statement of WagGas on the Passage of House Bill 8456

WagGas

The passage of House Bill 8456 on Wednesday is a dark day for Filipinos, as it promotes gas — a fuel that is as expensive, unsafe, and deadly — as a source of energy despite the great advances made in renewable energy in the country. Gas, much like coal, damages the environment at every stage of its use, from extraction to utilization in power plants. It promotes climate change, further aggravating the extreme weather impacts we are already experiencing, which we all — including our government — have committed to prevent from further worsening.

HB 8456 promotes the importation of this fuel, subjecting Filipino consumers to expensive fluctuations in the world market. Its transport on ships also increases the risk that we will have another and probably worse spill than the one we already experience with MT Princess Empress in the Verde Island Passage, whose effects are still felt to this day.

There is no reason to rely on gas. The full transition to renewable energy is not only feasible, it is what must be done to curb the destructive effects of the climate crisis. We already have 5.5GW of renewable energy available for the grid by next year, and more can be had if the government will just stop extending the lifetime of the fossil fuel industry and instead commit to full renewable energy. Renewable energy is abundant here in our country, affordable, and does not contribute to climate change. The only beneficiaries of the gas industry are the investors who profit from the long-term misery imposed on Filipino consumers.

We urge the Senate to vote against this bill. Stand with the welfare of Filipinos and defend the country against the climate crisis.

Bishop Gerry Alminaza
Convenor, WagGas

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