TAGUIG CITY – The Technical Assistance (TA) component of the European Union – Supported Access to Sustainable Energy Programme (EU-ASEP) wrapped up its five and a half years of implementation through a virtual project closing ceremony on Friday, 3 September 2021. About 180 participants attended the event comprising of energy stakeholders, beneficiaries and implementing partners. The event was followed by the ASEP 11th Steering Committee Meeting.
“The DOE recognizes all the accomplishments of the EU-ASEP, particularly in increasing the contribution of RE by providing electricity services in unviable and unserved areas, and in enhancing the capabilities of Electric Cooperatives in hosting RE projects,” DOE Undersecretary and EU-ASEP Steering Committee Co-Chair with EU Emmanuel P. Juaneza said in his opening statement.
ASEP was launched in September 2016 with the European Union (EU) providing about 66 million EUR (around 3.9 billion PhP) grant to the Philippine Government through the Department of Energy (DOE) to increase the share of renewables in the energy mix, expand access to electricity by remote populations, and increase energy efficiency. ASEP TA is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Reiner-Lemoine-Institut, and ICF International.
Together with the Department of Energy Electric Power Industry Management Bureau and DOE Field Offices, ASEP TA upscaled the livelihood opportunities and improved the quality of life of 574 farmer-beneficiaries through the Productive Uses of Renewable Energy (PURE). This initiative makes use of solar-powered machines and post-harvest strategies for easier raw product processing thus also increasing their incomes.
Specifically, 4 PURE projects were implemented in Provinces of Davao Occidental, Pangasinan and recently in Negros Occidental all in partnership with the TeaM Energy Foundation, Inc. and concern Local Government Units and Electric Cooperatives in the areas. Through ASEP, various innovative electrification solutions were implemented that strengthens the sustainability of electrification projects in last-mile areas. ASEP TA also provided support to the DOE in developing the demand side framework that will analyze the electricity consumption that will result in the recommendations for the rationalization of subsidy granted to different consumer classes.
In partnership with the DOE Energy Utilization Management Bureau, ASEP TA supported the implementation of RA 11285 or the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act of 2019 and its Implementing Rules and Regulations. ASEP TA helped enhance and redesign energy labels for major lighting products and household appliances using a star-rating. It provided technical support in updating the 2020 Guidelines on Energy Conserving Design of Buildings, mandated by DOE Department Circular No. 2020-12-0026 for adoption in all new building construction and retrofits in the Philippines. Around 1,200 LGUs and local stakeholders also attended a 2-year series of regional forums organized by ASEP TA to discuss the impact of RA 11285 on local planning and development.
ASEP TA has tapped the participation of the youth on the national level through its information, education and communication campaign, art and photography contests, publication of an renewable energy and energy efficiency-based children’s book, and several animation videos that will be benefit the DOE and the Department of Education.
Delegation of the European Union to the Philippines Head of Cooperation Christoph Wagner in his opening remarks said “ASEP TA is not just Technical Assistance but also capacity building, crucial for sustainability, such as on-the-job trainings and knowledge management systems that will last beyond the end of this program. It is also about piloting certain actions on the ground with the private sector, such as the recent Productive Use of Renewable Energy 4 Switch On and Turn Over event conducted in the Visayas region.”
Wagner further expressed that, “It is very interesting to see how cooperation with the private sector on the ground can make a big difference for the community using renewable energy and new tools for climate change mitigation. I am confident that the benefits and outcomes of this component will remain because it has been embedded and owned by the DOE. Even if this TA component ends now, its fruits will reach further into the future and benefit your future work.”
ASEP TA Team Leader Douglas Liner reported, “ASEP TA developed studies to support the government’s effort to achieve 100% electrification by 2022. We provided capacity-building activities and formulated various policies, assessment and hybridization tools that are useful for electric cooperatives, implementing partners especially the DOE, Energy Regulatory Commission, and the National Electrification Administration and stakeholders in the electric power industry.”
He also shared that “With this, the TA has gathered 6207 participants from 1764 different organizations during its local and virtual technical workshops, and awareness-raising activities with women normally making up at least 50% of the participants.” Finally, he thanked everyone for all the support and involvement of the experts and partners.
In his hand-over, GIZ Asia Portfolio Manager Florian Seeger highlighted the success factors of ASEP TA, “Way back in 2016, the TA begun by building on an excellent network and existing relationships with DOE and consortium partners. The success was made possible through the brilliant counterparts and the national team who served as the backbone of the program.” He officially and symbolically handed over the responsibilities of the TA through a virtual hand-over of a hammer with a challenge to carry on, in a responsible manner, to be innovative and creative for sustainable energy solutions.
DOE Senior Undersecretary Jesus Cristino P. Posadas was also present in the event who received the responsibilities from the ASEP TA. “The EU-ASEP played a major role in realizing several outputs. Without doubt, the DOE’s program contributions to energy security, energy access and environmental sustainability would not have been possible without the support of the EU-ASEP experts and the tireless people on the ground. On behalf of DOE Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi, we accept your handover and the responsibility that comes with it,” Senior Usec. Posadas said.
ASEP has two complementary components for Investment Support and Grants for Pro-Poor and Climate Resilient Energy Solutions which will continue until the end of 2022.
In this event, it was confirmed that the EU and DOE are developing a new TA project in support of energy transition which will be implemented until end of 2022.
Over the next years, the EU will continue to support climate change adaptation and mitigation, renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives, together with private and government partners to bring forward the Philippine government’s energy transition agenda.
For details, please contact:
Kristine Anne A. Urquia
EU-ASEP TA Technical and Communications Advisor
EUD Public Affairs Officer
Undersecretary Felix William Fuentebella
Ms. Jive Bullock
DOE Head of Public Affairs 09178253372
email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org