Batad, in Northern Luzon Philippines, is in the top 5 of my favorite places on earth. I wanted to share with you some beautiful scenery I saw during a visit there. The only way to get here is a a long overnight bus up from Manila, then a tricycle ride up to the saddle of the road, which is a path in many places. From there a trusted guide will lead you down narrow winding paths for a few hours until you walk out of the jungle and a pure gem will lie in front of you.
MANDATORY REMINDER from CNN: NASA reports that by the next 10 months, earth gets hotter by 4 degrees from now. Himalayan glaciers are melting @ rapid rate. Our climate is changing drastically & it's getting worse. We must help fight Global Warming by doing the ff steps: 1. Plant more trees, 2. Don't waste water, 3. Use cloth bag & don't burn plastic.
This is not true. However, don’t let this stop you from doing the right thing.
When Salwa Hosseini, 20, was arrested at a protest in Tahrir Square, she was forced to strip naked in front of photograph-snapping male soldiers. Then, she and the other female prisoners underwent “virginity tests.” If their tests came up negative, they would be savagely beaten and arrested for prostitution.
According to Amnesty International, “virginity tests” can be considered a form of torture and sexual assault when they are inflicted by force. Last week, a senior Egyptian general affirmed the hostile nature of these practices, arguing, “They weren’t virgins in the first place.”
Female protesters in Egypt should not be punished and sexually tortured for standing up for their beliefs. Tell the governing Egyptian Military Council that these human rights violations cannot continue.
The river is made of hydrogen sulfide. As hydrogen sulfide is much denser than water, it stays at the bottom and creates its own river. However, hydrogen sulfide is classified as a level 4 in the MSDS, and is very dangerous. Definitely not something you want to go take a dip in.
MAKATI CITY, METRO MANILA—Two decades from now, half of the Philippines’ energy needs will rely on renewable energy as the country aims to increase by threefold power generated by “green” energy sources, President Benigno Aquino III said Tuesday.
“We aim to achieve 50 percent sustainable renewable energy by 2030 so that we will not be relying too much on coal and fossil fuels that have fluctuating prices and limited supply,” Aquino during the launch and turnover of the National Renewable Energy Program (NREP) from the Department of Energy (DoE).
Aquino noted that his administration will prioritize the electrification of “off-grid” areas such as Kalinga and Bukidnon provinces, and other remote villages through renewable energy sources such as hydroelectric, biomass and geothermal plants.
“At this age, progress should be inclusive and there should be no child who cannot afford to study at home at night because there is no electricity in their community,” said Aquino.
In remote villages in Mindoro province, most families rely on bunker fuel for light and average cost of power is P25 per kilowatt house (kWh), which is significantly higher than prices from conventional electricity resources at P5 per kWh, based on statistics from the DoE.
To mitigate the impact of climate change and to curb the reliance on fossil fuels, it makes sense for the country to invest in renewable energy, costs of which are expected to decrease over time.
Present costs of renewable energy are as follows: P6 per kWh for mini hydro, P7 per kWh for biomass, P10.95 per kWh for wind, P17.95 per kWh for solar, and P17.65 per kWh for ocean resources. “Mature” renewable energy sources such as geothermal and large hydroelectric plants average at P6 to P7 per kWh.
Under the NREP, the Philippines is being groomed to become the top producer of geothermal energy, double the capacity of hydroelectric plants and expand the percentage of biomass, wind, ocean and solar resources, said DoE secretary Jose Rene Almendras.
Through the development of renewable energy, Almendras said the country can increase its energy sufficiency by threefold from the current 27.5 percent.
DoE will also implement a national database for solar, tidal and wind, which are intermittent resources that are not continuously available all throughout the day. For example, solar energy is at its peak during daytime but cannot be harnessed at night
Wind, solar and ocean or tidal wave energy require huge capital outlay and are intermittent resources so they are eyed as secondary or complementary green energy sources by government and the private sector partners.
Under the implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act 9153 or the Renewable Energy Act, the country’s renewable energy supply will have an incremental increase of one percent each year.
Presently, 34 percent or about 5,000 MW of the country’s power supply is from renewable energy sources. This means it will take at least two decades for the country to use renewable energy for 54 percent (15,300MW) in the energy mix, according to Department of Energy undersecretary Jose Layug Jr.
“There is high interest among foreign and local investors given that DoE already processed 227 renewable energy, another 80 pending for approval by July and 150 more for further feasibility study,” Layug said in an interview.
The government strategy is to tap foreign and local investors to finance and build these renewable energy plants to offset huge capital outlay. The investors are eyed to pass on the feed-in tariffs for technology development to consumers via local distribution partners, said Layug.
There are pending petitions to the National Renewable Energy Board to set the feed-in tariffs for renewable energy consumers at P10.65 per kWh.
Over time, Layug said renewable energy will reach grid parity and will be as cheap, if not cheaper, as energy produced by coal-fired power plants.
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