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DOE identifies natural gas as country’s ‘fuel of future’

Natural gas will play a vital role in the country’s energy mix and in the government’s goal to achieve energy independence, the Department of Energy (DOE) said yesterday.

At the virtual 2nd LNG and Clean Energy Investment Summit, DOE Assistant Secretary Leonido Pulido III urged investors to look into opportunities in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector in the country.

“With Malampaya’s depletion estimated to occur in the next few years, there is an urgent need to attract more investments in the downstream LNG industry,” Pulido said.

He said that aside from adding natural gas sources in the energy mix, DOE also envisions the country to be the LNG hub in Southeast Asia.

The DOE has issued three notices to proceed for LNG terminal projects to Excelerate Energy L.P., Batangas Clean Energy Inc., and Atlantic Gulf & Pacific Company of Manila, Inc.

FGEN LNG Corp. and Energy World Gas Operations Philippines Inc. also received their permits to construct their LNG projects

In the same virtual event, Senate Energy Committee chair Sherwin Gatchalian said natural gas is the fuel of choice and the fuel of the future for the Philippines as more firms are investing in the sector.

“It just goes to show that natural gas will be a fuel of (the) future for our electric power needs. This is a signal to the market that natural gas and LNG will be here to stay in our energy mix,” he said.

Gatchalian echoed that LNG is “a mode to achieve energy independence”.

“I’m looking to make our country more energy independent, and the way to do that is to harness what we have in the country —hydro, natural gas— as long as it doesn’t burden our consumers with high electricity cost,” he added.

According to DOE, natural gas accounts for 21.9 percent of the country’s power generation mix in 2019.

The country targets to increase natural gas’ share to energy mix to 33 percent by 2040, while renewable energy will share 32 percent, coal at 34 percent, and oil at 1 percent.*PNA

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