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7月27日のまにら新聞から

Philippines should look at nuclear energy as source of power: Zubiri

[ 415 words|2022.7.27|英字 (English) ]

The Philippines should look at nuclear energy to boost its source of power as President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. mentioned in his State of the Nation Address (SONA).

In an interview with dzBB Tuesday, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri said that the Philippines is one of the only few countries in Asia that has not explored nuclear energy.

“We are one of the few countries that have not looked at the nuclear option in Southeast Asia…The countries that that are developing nuclear power in Asia (are) Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, even Singapore is looking at a nuclear option,” Zubiri said.

He added that Myanmar and Singapore are considering nuclear power.

On Monday, Marcos said in his SONA that the country must “re-examine the strategy in building nuclear power plants” while following the rules of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for nuclear power plants, which have been strengthened after the nuclear accident in Fukushima.

Zubiri said he is in favor using renewable energy .

“I am the author of the Renewable Energy Law. So I’m focused on solar, wind, geothermal, hydropower even off-shore wind projects or programs. I’m for it 100 percent. But at the end of the day is it enough to be able to produce the energy requirement in the next six years? You wanna have 8 percent GDP growth rate. You better have an energy sector that is robust,” he said.

Nuclear energy is renewable because it is "infinite", according to Zubiri.

“It is just (a matter of) how to take care of the nuclear waste problem. How to make sure the facility is strong enough to be safe from earthquakes, tsunamis,” he said.

The Philippines built its only nuclear plant during the time of Marcos' father in Bataan. But it was never allowed to operate following safety concerns raised after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident.

In a related development, Zubiri said Marcos plans to deliver another SONA together with his Cabinet members in front of stakeholders.

“I think he wants to have another SONA with stakeholders. I didn’t ask him that personally but I spoke to two secretaries," Zubiri said.

"And he had this idea, in Malacanang, in one of his Cabinet meetings, that he wants to do another one with a full Cabinet slate on stage and he wants to discuss it to the different sectors, foreign chambers, all the industries concerned. He wants to lay it out one by one on how he plans to do it,” he added. Jaspearl Tan/DMS