The Department of Energy (DOE) is proposing to temporarily enhance the lifeline subsidy mechanics and enable electric cooperatives (EC) to build up their own generating facilities to cut the cost of energy, and the suspending of the Biofuels Act of 2006 to ameliorate rising fuel costs.

Undersecretary of the Department of Energy Benito Ranque stated that the government is mulling over the possibility of increasing the monthly amount of the lifeline subsidy from Php400 to Php800 for the first 100 days that President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. would be in office.

In accordance with the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (EPIRA), the marginalized end-users, also known as low-income, captive, household electricity consumers who have a consumption level of electricity that falls below a threshold level established by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC), are eligible for the lifeline subsidy.

At this time, the threshold is established at 100 kilowatt-hours each month. Ranque believes that a more long-term solution to the problem of high prices would be for the government to give the electric cooperatives (EC) the authority to construct their own power plants, even though the recommendation about the lifeline rate is only a temporary fix.

Source: Philippine Star

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