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Philippine commercial energy sources, 1990


Nonrenewable sources


Renewable sources

PHILIPPINE COMMERCIAL ENERGY SOURCES, 1990


Advantages

Problemslconstraints

Nonrenewable energy sources



Oil

- Oil-based power plants can be

- Air pollution.


built near end-user sites.

- Contributes significantly to the build


- Relatively shorter time to build compared to other conventional power plants.

up of greenhouse gases, especially CO2.



- Mainly imported and represents huge drain on foreign currency reserves.



Sourcing by Region (1990)



Local (Palawan) 2 %



Middle East 80 %



Asia 17 %



Other regions 1%



- Price and supply are affected by events in oil-producing countries.

Coal

- Commercially significant deposits exist in the country.

- Air pollution; contributor of CO2, one of the greenhouse gases and also of sulfur dioxide, SO2, which is a contributor to acid rain.



- Water pollution.


a. Potential for foreign currency savings.

- Coal mining, especially through the open-pit type, is environmentally destructive.


b. Reduced impact of adverse developments in the global energy market.

- Coal mining presents serious occupational health hazards.



- Low quality of most local deposits (subbituminous and lignite):



- Coal deposits in the country are dispersed leading to high transport costs.

Nuclear

- Requires relatively little land for the- amount of energy derived.

- Thermal pollution.


- Discounting leaks and accidents, does not contribute to air and water pollution.

- Disposal of radioactive wastes remains a big issue.



- Catastropic consequences in case of an accident.



- Requires huge capital investments.



- Dependence on foreign technologists.



- Dependence on imported enriched uranium.

Natural gas

- Cleaner burning, i.e., less- polluting, compared to the other fossil fuels.

- Although natural gas has been found in the country, this energy source has not been exploited. Doing so may require large initial investments.

Renewable energy sources

Geothermal

- Significant reserves available in the country.

- Destruction of forests; clearing of large tracts of land:


- Foreign currency savings.

a. Loss of wildlife habitat.


- Minimal pollution

b. Displacement of local populace.


- Lessens impact of adverse

- Huge capital investment.


Developments in the global energy market.


Hydropower

- Non-polluting.

- Huge capital investments.

(large)

- No fuel costs; foreign currency savings.

- Submersion of large tracts of land; alteration of hydrological features of vast areas:


- Lessens impact of adverse developments in the global

a. loss of wildlife habitat: end,


energy market.

b. displacement of local populace.



- Dams aid the spread of water-borne diseases, such as malaria and schistosomiasis.

Mini and micro

- Non-polluting.

- High initial costs in local or community level terms.

hydropower

- No displacement of local populace.

- Technical skills required to build such plants are not available locally.


- Lesser impact on hydrology.



- Can be built on a scale more



appropriate to the requirements



of end users.



- Feasible alternative to areas



not served by regular power



lines.


Biomass

- Utilizes wastes which would otherwise contribute to disposal and pollution problems.

- Supply and collection of materials limit the viability to local levels.


- Foreign currency savings (13 percent of Philippine energy consumption are now met by biomass.)


bagasse, rice, husks, straw, etc.

- Locally feasible in areas where materials are abundant.

- Competes with other uses such as fertilizer.



- Collection may be a problem.



- Burning contributes to the build-up of greenhouse gases.

- biogas

- Clean-burning; non-polluting.

- High initial cost in household-level


- Slurry may be used as organic

terms.


fertilizer.

- Requires a not inconsiderable amount of maintenance.



- Requires a sufficient number of animals in one or several nearby sites or else collection of manure may be a problem.

Fuelwood

- Still widely available in most rural areas although shortages are being felt in some.

- Contributes to de forestation especially mangroves and in areas with rapid population.



- Burning adds to the build-up of the greenhouse gases.



- Replanting required.

Note: Fuelwood is also a biomass energy resource although, because of its special importance, it is discussed separately. Some studies have estimated that as much as 70 percent of Philippine households use fuelwood to some extent.

Solar

- Minimal operating expense; no fuel cost

- High initial cost in local or community level terms.


- Non-polluting.



- Can be tapped practically in all rural areas (and unshaded urban areas), especially in isolated places which are not reached by regular power lines.


Wind

- Minimal operating expenses; no fuel cost.

- High initial cost in local or community Ievel terms.


- Non-polluting.

- Feasible only in areas where wind


- May be feasible in areas isolated from regular power lines.

factors are favorable.