Ilocos Norte: “The Coal-Free Province”

Author: Darvin Tocmo  Date Posted:5 October 2016 

Ilocos Norte: “The Coal-Free Province” A resolution for greener world has just been passed by the Ilocos Norte provincial board by eliminating coal from the province’s allowable sources of electricity. Last August 15, the board approved the Provincial Resolution No. 017-2016 authored by environment committee chairman Mariano Marcos II and is now declared as a “clean, green and coal-free province.” The resolution read “no office or instrumentality of the provincial government of Ilocos Norte shall issue any permit, authorization, endorsement or any expression of support to the development of coal projects in the province.” Ilocos Norte is the first province to phase out coal use as the board encouraged all two cities and 21 municipalities of the province to refrain from issuing coal permits and become a total renewable energy consumer. Ilocos Norte is already generating about 50 percent of its power requirement from its solar, wind and hydroelectric energy sources. As of 2015, 264-MW wind energy capacity has been installed in the province that makes the Ilocos Norte as the currently dubbed wind energy capital of the Philippines. The resolution said “the leadership of Ilocos Norte has consciously supported renewable energy development not only because the province is endowed with the essential natural environment but also because it is the only way to promote the economic prosperity of present and future generations of Ilocanos that is friendly to the environment and is not harmful to the people’s health and well-being.” “Renewable energy has also given the people of Ilocos Norte reason to be proud for significantly contributing to the reduction of carbon emissions that harm the environment and sadly render the country and the Filipinos among the most vulnerable in the world to the devastating effects of climate change,” the resolution added. Finally, the Ilocos Norte provincial board declared “the province of Ilocos Norte supports the national government in its commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change through the Conference of Parties 21 to reduce carbon emissions by 70% from expected levels in 2030, given that its experience and success proves that concrete actions can be taken now.”