Monday, May 6, 2013

Biofuels Law

Six years go, on 06 May 2007, the Biofuels Law (RA 9367) enacted by the 13th Congress started to take effect, as gasoline stations sold diesel with 1% coco biofuel blend.  After several years, it is about time to review the implementation of the Law, which was intended to lead to cleaner and cheaper fuel, climate change mitigation, the development of a bioethanol industry, the generation of jobs, and increased income for sugar farmers.

The review of the implementation of the Biofuels Law is a major task of the 16thCongress, which shall open in July this year.

One of the vocal supporters of the Biofuels bill in the 13th Congress was the first-term Iloilo City Congressman Raul T. Gonzalez Jr. Below are excerpts from the Journal of the House of Representatives during deliberations on the bill:

“[Rep. Gonzalez] said he has been an advocate of the government’s search for alternative sources of fuel since he took his oath as a new member of the 13thCongress.

“Rep. Gonzalez informed the Body that, in Brazil, which has a big industry for sugarcane and produces ethanol for local consumption as well as for export, the average price for ethanol is USD25/barrel. He also stressed that coco-diesel is an alternative fuel for the country and suggested that the bill include a timeline for the use of the same.

“He pointed out that the country could eventually earn foreign currency by exporting biofuels produced from its many sugarcane plantations, to such countries as China and Japan, whose demand for biofuels cannot be satisfied by Brazil. This will contribute to improving our balance of trade.”

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