THE Power for People Coalition (P4P) on Wednesday welcomed the cancellation of the 2×300 MW coal-fired power plant project in Subic, as announced earlier this week, as a triumph of communities at the forefront of the resistance against coal and a tell-tale sign of the fate awaiting other coal projects.
The Subic coal plant project under Redondo Peninsula Energy Inc. (RP Energy), a joint venture between Aboitiz Power Corporation and Taiwan Cogeneration Corp., has been strongly opposed by the green energy coalition for years. “While the cancellation of the Subic coal plant is a welcome development, we no longer find it surprising given the many triumphs that groups advocating for clean energy have won over it. We recall how, in 2019, the contract of RP Energy was among the seven power supply agreements (PSA) of Meralco denied by the Supreme Court for failing to adhere to proper procurement practices. We hope the shelving of the Subic project means more coal cancellations to come,” said Gerry Arances, Convenor of P4P.
According to P4P, the PSA rejection and now the cancellation of the Subic coal plant are built on the decade-long resistance of local communities.
“With this news, we are able to face the youth and future generations of Subic residents with pride knowing we won the fight against this dirty energy project. We have seen the kind of destruction coal and other fossil fuels wreaked onto other communities in Zambales and across the country. The cancellation of RP Energy’s coal plant is an encouragement for us to continue working to free Subic from the threat of dirty energy,” said Jen Velarmino Van der Heijde, President of Subic Bay Freeport Chamber for Health and Environment Conservation (SBFCHEC).
Arances said this development should push the reconsideration of the proposed 1,200 MW coal plant in Quezon under the Atimonan One Energy (A1E).
“The failure of RP Energy in pursuing its Subic coal plant should already be a lesson learned for coal proponents that coal will result in nothing but problems for them in years to come. On our part as residents of Quezon, we would continue using our voices to amplify the cry of the Earth against coal,” said Fr. Warren Puno, Director of the Ministry of Ecology of the Diocese of Lucena.