Renewable Energy Boot Camp

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Renewable Energy Boot Camp

for Young Engineers

Project Primer

 

Context

The energy situation in the Philippines is shaky at best. Our high cost of electricity, still one of the highest in the world, is a major reason why industries are not developed here in the country. The said prices also bar the poor from the benefits of electricity. In some areas in the country, energy supply remains unreliable, as evidenced by the rotating brownouts in Luzon and the 8- to 12-hour scheduled brownouts in Mindanao.

These problems still happen despite the Philippines’ vast renewable energy (RE) resources. The Philippines was a pioneer in exploring and utilizing RE. Amidst the energy crises right after EDSA, however, policy shifted towards a quick-fix solution of massively contracting fossil fuel-based power producers. The current government remains ambivalent in its stance on renewable energy: despite committing to reduce up to 70% of the Philippines’ carbon emissions in the Paris Agreement, most of the energy projects in the government’s pipeline are coal and gas plants.

The potential of RE to address our dire energy needs, coupled with concerns on climate change, requires us to plan towards an eventual shift towards RE. Aside from minimizing our carbon footprint and helping us achieve our COP 21 goals, RE provides us the opportunity to decentralize power production, diversify our sources of energy, reduce our dependence on fossil fuel imports, and ultimately, democratize energy.

Vision

Germany’s successful transition towards the phasing out of fossil and nuclear power and the adoption of renewable energy options was in large part due to their investment in a strong base of technical energy experts early on.

Working from the German model, the Renewable Energy Boot Camp for Young Engineers (REBOOT) aims to develop a local pool of technically-oriented, development-driven, and proactive renewable energy advocates that will lead the way towards a successful transition to clean energy that is accessible to all sectors of the Philippine society.

Objectives

REBOOT should:

  • Develop the conceptual and practical capabilities of young technical experts not only in advanced RE technology, but also in organizational management, advocacy campaigning, community development, resource mobilization, energy issues, and other relevant areas;
  • Empower young engineers to lead on the frontlines of renewable energy technology, industry, policy, development, and research in the country;
  • Create a network of young renewable energy advocate leaders that will take a proactive role in energy issues, and;
  • Embody the ideals of freedom, equality, social justice, and solidarity.