Mindanao power development, reality vs illusion

* This is my column in BusinessWorld last Monday, June 11. From 2006 to 2013, the Mindanao grid had only 1,900 to 2,000 MW of installed power capacity, mostly sourced from hydropower facilities that provide higher output during the rainy season but declines during the summer. As a result, power shortages lasting several hours a day are […]

Positive and negative disruptions in the electricity market

* This is my article in BusinessWorld last Monday, May 28, 2018. Last week, May 22, a BusinessWorld report said “DoE forecast for peak power demand exceeded on May 17” referring to 10,688 MW peak demand in the Luzon grid on May 17 reported by the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) vs peak demand in […]

Energy mix and wishful thinking

* This is my column in BusinessWorld last April 16, 2018. “You must be ready to give up even the most attractive ideas when experiment shows them to be wrong.” — Alessandro Volta (1745-1827, Italian scientist who invented one of the first electric batteries known as a voltaic pile) This quote should be remembered by people who […]

Solar insecurity, energy stability and affordability

* This is my column in BusinessWorld on February 26, 2018. “When PV Solar rely on up to 67% of revenues from subsidies, the state becomes a counter-party that is critical to sustaining the firm’s financial viability. Vagaries of politics imply constantly changing priorities, making for a fickle advocate.” — Ricardo Barcelona, author of Energy Investment: An […]

On Tesla gigafactory, WEF + Tesla fake news and video

Last December, a WEF video about the Tesla gigafactory in Nevada producing battery cells and e-cars was circulating in social media. This portion particularly caught my attention because it cannot be true, it is fake news — “It’s entirely powered by renewable energy.” If the wind does not blow, or the Sun does not shine […]

Energy favoritism under TRAIN

* This is my column in BusinessWorld last December 19, 2017. The recently approved tax reform for acceleration and inclusion (TRAIN) by the Congressional Bicameral Committee exhibits a number of favoritism for some energy products and players while penalizing others. In particular, among the three fossil fuels, only petroleum products and coal received tax hike while natural […]

Ric Barcelona on energy investment and subsidies

I am reposting an article by a friend, Ricardo “Ric” Barcelona, published in the Inquirer last November 27, 2017. I attended the book launching of Ric’s book, “Energy Investment: An Adaptive Approach to Profiting from Uncertainties” last November 22, 2017 at Shangrila Hotel Makati. Good work and congrats again, Ric. Why do subsidies often fail? In writing my […]

US energy trading and implications for Asia and Philippines

* This is my article in BusinessWorld last November 16, 2017. Among the global leaders who attended the ASEAN Summit 2017 this week in Manila were the leaders of the US, China, Russia, Australia, and India. These five countries are also the top five in having the world’s biggest coal reserves and top five biggest coal producers. […]

The German Jamaica coalition before the collapse over energy and other issues

Until middle of this month, there was still hope of a possible “Jamaica coalition” in Germany – Black flag by CDU-CSU, Yellow by FDP and Green by the Greens. I posted these thoughts and news liniks from November 18-20, 2017 in my fb wall, reposting them here. ————— Before, Merkel and CDU/CSU were chummy-chummy with […]

US energy policies and implications in Asia and Philippines

* This is my article in BusinessWorld last October 31, 2017. Energy means development. It is not possible to have fast growth in all sectors — agriculture, manufacturing and services — and sustain it without ample supply of affordable and stable energy and electricity. The US remains the world’s biggest economy in terms of nominal or current […]