APEC asked to commit on carbon intensity reduction

by Myrna Velasco – November 16, 2015

from Manila Bulletin

The member-economies of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) are being prodded to commit toward reducing the carbon intensity of their respective energy sectors.

According to Eduardo Pedrosa, secretary general of the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC), while the member-countries are at different levels of development, it must be a common goal for them to pare the carbon footprints of their energy development and usage.

“The Asia Pacific region has set of economies with very, very different levels of development. Some are very advance economies, some still emerging, some with natural endowments in the energy resources…Canada of course, has a lot of energy resources, Indonesia has endowments in, let’s say coal…another thing is Australia on natural gas,” he cited.

Nevertheless, Pedrosa has qualified that there could be no ‘one-size-fits-all’ platform that all APEC member-countries can commonly pursue when it comes to ‘cleaning’ the sector’s carbon trail and in meeting their energy needs.

“It’s very hard to come up with a sort of generic or a single set of things that this region should do in terms of energy needs,” Pedrosa said.

He emphasized that so far “what they have done is to set some specific goals on the reduction of energy intensity – in terms of GDP (gross domestic product) production.”

Along that line, Pedrosa qualified that “this leaves each economy at its own to decide how they are going to go about that.”

The PECC nevertheless echoed pitch on many countries’ leaning for renewable energy (RE) developments – primarily those on solar and increased use of marine energy, among others.

He emphasized that RE seems to thrive as “questions about the future of nuclear technology” still dominate the global energy discourse following the Fukushima tragedy in 2011.

The Philippines is this year’s host to the APEC Leaders’ Summit which will be culminating this week.