By Myrna M. Velasco
SINGAPORE – To align electric vehicles (EVs) with global decarbonization goals under the Paris climate change agreement, it has been proposed that legislation shall be pushed to ensure that key percentage of power supply funneled into electric mobility shall be from renewable energy (RE) sources.
In his keynote speech during the Singapore International Energy Week, Francesco La Camera, director general of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) emphasized that while innovation and transformation have been continuously unfolding in the RE sector, it is often the legal environment that is not ready to support technological deployment as well as the flow of capital in certain segments.
He noted that in the overall quest of the world for solutions to avert climate change risks, “a fundamental transformation of the energy system is critically needed.”
La Camera asserted it is not just the direct installation of solar and wind farms as well as other RE technologies that energy policymakers and regulators must be focusing their attention to – but also in other forms of electrification of systems and industries, primarily the transport sector.
To achieve the 1.5-degree aim for the climate or to deliver 75% emissions reduction that will be out to prevent catastrophic global warming, he emphasized that at least 36-percent of electricity to be supplied to EVs shall be coming from the renewable energy sector.
That shall be in tandem with energy efficiency initiatives– which as targeted, will essentially pare carbon emissions globally by 25-percent.
La Camera noted the emissions of the transport system shall be part of the core concerns to be addressed, as he stressed that 7.0 million of reported premature deaths have been attributed to pollution – an environmental affliction often attributed to current energy use of transport systems.
Beyond transport, the other core sectors that must shift into greater RE use shall be buildings, district heating as well as other industries.
The Philippines is among the countries in the world cementing its pathway into electric mobility – but power supply sourcing is one issue that has yet to be clarified in the legislation process.
Notably, the dominant source of power supply in the Philippines is still from coal technology, hence, there are assertions that it will be a counter-productive move if more coal-fired power plants will be built just to support the deployment of electric vehicles.
And the rollout plan will even be worse because the country’s energy planners are not even laying down concrete policies yet that will require upgrade in technology for the next wave of coal-fired power plant installations.