Cebu continues to be one of the fastest-growing provinces in the country. Living up to its moniker as the Queen City of the South, Cebu City is one of the leading cities of the country when it comes to tourism. With its airport open to international flights, it’s become easier for our neighboring countries to visit the island directly, completely bypassing Manila. Aside from the airport, the government continues to invest in infrastructure on the island, therefore attracting businesses and producing more jobs.
These changes and progress take up a lot of power, both manpower and electrical. Thus, to sustain the growth of the island, Cebu must start investing in alternative power sources to achieve energy independence.
Natural gas is a non-renewable resource that is found in deep underground rock formations. It consists primarily of methane and alkanes and comes from decomposed plant and animal matter exposed to high heat. Natural gas can produce energy, provide heat for buildings, fuel vehicles and power industrial furnaces.
In addition, natural gas is a much cleaner fuel than oil and coal plus the fact that it is indigenous to the Philippines makes it a better alternative.
Wind energy farms are not new in the country and have already been present in the Philippines for decades. Two famous wind farms are located in Banqui and Burgos, Ilocos Norte while Rizal has a smaller one in Pililia, Rizal. Each wind farm produces a significant amount of energy for the communities around it. The Banqui wind farm produces 33MW of power while the Burgos wind farm remains to be the largest in Southeast Asia, covering over 600 hectares of land.
Wind energy is harvested by using the airflow that passes through wind turbines. The faster the winds, the more energy the turbines produce. Its passage through the turbines provide mechanical power that, in turn, turn electric generators on. Wind farms are a great source of power – it’s renewable and sustainable, and with far less impact on the environment. The only downside is its initial investment. It costs a lot to gather the materials for the turbines, not to mention building and maintaining the farm.
Solar power, as the name explicitly states, is the conversion of sunlight to energy through the use of solar panels. Given that the Philippines is a tropical country, getting lots of sun throughout the year, this energy source is highly plausible to use. It’s renewable and highly sustainable with little to no negative effect on the environment.
However, similar to wind energy, solar power can cost a lot during pre-production. Solar panels are quite expensive and to produce a lot of energy, several of it will be needed.
While this does not solve Cebu’s need for energy independence, this shows the many different power sources that Cebu can choose from. The province might not even need to choose just one, as all of them can be established in the province and fuel its continuous growth in the form of energy for its infrastructures.
However, before choosing, it is best to know the advantages and disadvantages of each one to be fully prepared of the benefits and consequences it might bring.