SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau
Speaker Lord Allan Velasco on Monday hailed the House of Representatives’ passage of a bill creating the Philippine Energy Research and Policy Institute (PERPI) that he championed when he was head of the chamber’s energy panel.
Voting 208-0 with no abstention, lawmakers unanimously approved on third and final reading House Bill (HB) 8928 to be known as the “Philippine Energy Research and Policy Institute Act.”
Velasco, who was chairman of the House Committee on Energy prior to becoming Speaker, said the proposed body would help “bridge the research and policy gap in the energy sector.”
“It is high time that the country develop a stable, sustainable, affordable and reliable energy supply by harnessing the latest research and technology available in order to meet the country’s growing demand for energy and the Duterte administration’s long-term development goals,” Velasco said.
Aside from Velasco, more than 80 House members have signed on as principal authors of HB 8928, which was earlier approved by the House Committees on Appropriations and on Energy, chaired by Representatives Eric Yap of ACT-CIS Party-list and Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo of Pampanga’s 2nd District, respectively.
Velasco envisions PERPI as an independent body that shall “undertake trans-disciplinary research, explore and develop the latest technologies, and provide autonomous policy output or recommendations for the benefit of policymakers, as well as private and public energy stakeholders.”
Under the bill, PERPI will be an independent policy and technology research institution attached to the University of the Philippines (UP) headed by an Executive Director, who is a recognized expert in energy policy and research.
The institute will also have its own Advisory Council consisting of 10 members, including five ex-officio members, namely: the secretaries of the Department of Energy, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Science and Technology; Director-General of the National Economic and Development Authority; and UP President.
The five remaining members of the Council shall be selected by the UP President each representing any of the fields of engineering, law, science, statistics, economic, social science and public health.
PERPI is expected to provide timely technical and strategic assistance to the government, energy regulators and Congress, on energy-related matters requiring policy direction and advice.
It shall also serve as a medium in bringing together local and international experts in the field of energy through local and international linkages.
The bill also seeks to establish mechanisms for dissemination and utilization of research for technology and policy development, create and administer training programs and provide appropriate fellowship grants for capacity building of the academe and energy stakeholders.
The amount necessary for the operations of the PERPI shall be included in the annual General Appropriations Act.
An endowment fund administered and maintained by the PERPI will also be created to finance its operations, including the purchase of research equipment and facilities, compensation and honoraria of researchers, among others.
The fund will be sourced from contributions, donations, grants and other incomes accruing from the PERPI’s operations. #