(Contributed photo)

MANILA – Socialized housing sites can use alternative sources of energy to spare occupants from the rising cost of electricity.

Senator Risa Hontiveros has filed Senate Bill No. 378, or the Solar Home System Financing for Social Housing Program Act, for the government to provide easy access to solar energy.

“This latest oil price hike should be a wake-up call that our present setup of importing oil for our energy needs is unsustainable and anti-consumer. Let us tap into our wealth of indigenous resources for our energy needs and end this vicious cycle of dependency on imported oil,” Hontiveros said in a statement, adding it will lessen the country’s vulnerability to international oil price shocks.

On Tuesday, oil companies implemented a per liter increase in the price of gasoline by PHP1.20, diesel by PHP6.85, and kerosene by PHP3.50.

The increase resulted in the year-to-date total adjustments to stand at a net increase of PHP15.65/liter for gasoline, PHP35.80/liter for diesel, and PHP26.75/liter for kerosene.

Hontiveros said investing more in renewable energy projects such as solar, offshore wind, small and medium hydroelectric, and geothermal projects, will lessen our dependence on imported oil.

“The present situation only shows how vulnerable our nation is to oil price shocks. If nothing is changed, we will always be at the mercy of the market and its most influential players. Hindi pwedeng price monitoring lang ang aksyon ng pamahalaan. Kailangan nating madaliin ang pag-roll out ng renewable energy projects na pakikinabangan ng ating mga kababayan (We cannot just monitor the prices. We need to utilize renewable energy projects that can be of use by our countrymen), Hontiveros said.”

In a previous budget hearing, Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Raphael Lotilla agreed with the need to implement reforms that will lure investors of renewable energy projects and technologies.

Hontiveros pressed the DOE, Department of Transportation, and other agencies for a faster and effective implementation of the nationwide electric vehicle program, and to iron out problems preventing the wider adoption of “non-gas guzzling” vehicles. (PNA)