A total of 145 individuals attended the webinar entitled “Alternative Energy: Challenges and Opportunities” last October 29, 2020 via Zoom. The webinar is an initiative by the graduate students of the College of Engineering in Energy Engineering 296 class under Prof. Ferdinand G. Manegdeg. This was the first in the series of webinars on Energy Engineering.

The event highlighted the different sources of energy being utilized in the Philippines which can potentially replace fossil fuel as the main source of energy. This became an avenue to gather the different stakeholders of alternative energy such as experts and advocates.

The five energy resources in the country namely geothermal, hydro, solar, wind, and bioenergy were discussed by experts who also shared their knowledge and experience. An open forum was also done to accommodate questions and insights from the attendees.

Engineer Joy Cristine Tolentino from the Philippine Geothermal Production Company (geothermal energy) briefly gave a historical overview of geothermal energy utilization in the Philippines and shared her thoughts on how the country can further advance and fully maximize the potential of this indigenous resource. Engr. Rafael Macabiog, Vice President of the Renewable Energy Development of Aboitiz Power Corporation (hydropower) elaborated the project development processes and stages that a renewable energy plant developer has to go through prior to commercial operations of a power plant. Mr. Quintin Pastrana, President of WEnergy Power Pilipinas Inc. (solar power) talked about the must-knows on microgrids and the possibility of providing the cleanest possible 24/7 electricity through a combination of solar panels, clean batteries and diesel gensets. Engr. Joseph Sandro, assistant scientist from the International Rice Research Institute (bioenergy) shared IRRI’s research activities with regard to rice straw as a sustainable source of energy. Engr. Guian Mascardo, Project Manager of Triconti ECC Renewables (wind energy) discussed the basics of wind energy resource utilization in the Philippine setup.