Technology has adapted to people’s demands for a better and more accessible life. While these developments benefit society, they have overlooked the circumstances of the environment, often compromising its overall quality.
Nowadays, when people talk about technology, they also consider its sustainability efforts apart from its efficiency.
Such consideration for green technology spanned from private companies to public sectors, especially governments, to encourage more people to switch to sustainable technology.
Several companies and government agencies in the Philippines already implement green technology in their daily operations. Yet the thing about technology is that it never ceases to innovate, especially with new ideas formed every day.
Advancing the country’s sectors
Besides coming up with developments within the Philippine setting, various local governments also partner with their foreign counterparts to ensure maximum efficiency to increase the country’s production in various sectors.
Last May, the Department of Agriculture welcomed a South Korean-based company to promote smart farming technologies in the country. The company believes that smart farms are “the future of mankind.” It prides itself on producing smart greenhouses that create the optimum environment for agricultural, livestock, and fishery production.
The company specializes in high-tech greenhouses with a vertically-integrated structure applicable for businesses, like smart farms, plant factories, renewable energy, and urban landscaping.
Former DA Secretary William Dar supported the promotion of smart farming in the Philippines, especially with food shortages and a significant demand to provide Filipinos with quality food and a sustainable livelihood. He advised the South Korean firm to create a business model in the Philippines to allow members of the agriculture sector an opportunity to witness a modern farming approach.
Having a fresh perspective on technology will allow stakeholders to discover areas where their sector needs development.
Meanwhile, several local companies also apply sustainable technology of their own volition, especially those involved in sectors that damage the environment significantly.
A local steel company will soon operate the country’s first industrial-scale melt shop in 2024, using the latest green technology. The plant will use local scrap metal to produce high-grade billets as raw material for buildings, port construction, and shipbuilding, other projects.
The envisioned melt shop will formalize and organize the collection, consolidation, and recycling of scrap metal throughout the country, creating a business sub-sector with opportunities for individuals and small businesses. It also aims to keep the local government from spending dollars to import billets from foreign countries.
Several institutions also tapped into the potential of research and development in intensifying the implementation of sustainable technology in the Philippines. For instance, the University of Mindanao recently inaugurated its Center of Green Nanotechnology Innovations for Environmental Solutions (CGNIES), the first nanotechnology center in Mindanao funded by the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD), through the Infrastructure Development Program (IDP).
CGNIES will highlight sustainable approaches to developing nanomaterials from local resources and their integration into micro and macro structures for developing technological solutions to environmental problems.
Moreover, it envisions developing sustainable, scalable, and economical approaches to functional nanostructured materials while providing solutions that will benefit the environment and humanity.
Focusing on energy alternatives
Every leader knows that a country requires energy to function smoothly. However, with only a limited resource for energy supply, the Philippines hasn’t yet tapped into renewable sources that could sustain their activities in the long run without the extra cost.
President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. recently spoke with United States (US)-based companies that deal with renewable energy.
He first met with the top managers of NuScale Power, an American energy firm that provides advanced nuclear technology. It offers scalable advanced nuclear technology to produce electricity, heat, and clean water.
According to researchers, nuclear energy is sustainable, with a chance to become renewable if the uranium source changes from mined ore to seawater.
Marcos Jr. also met with WasteFuel, a California-based company that produces renewable fuels through proven technologies. The company hopes to address the climate emergency and revolutionalize mobility by converting municipal and agricultural waste into low-carbon fuels, renewable natural gas, and green methanol.
WasteFuel’s first project in development for aviation fuel is in the Philippines.
Presently, the Philippines utilizes renewable energy sources, including hydropower, geothermal and solar energy, wind power, and biomass resources. However, not many people recognize the potential of renewable energy, but the government hopes to change its perspective to benefit the community and environment for longer.
Creating a roadmap for a greener Philippines
The Philippines currently uses 30 percent of renewable energy, but many sustainability advocates and organizations feel it can do better.
One of the steps the country can take is outlining a “technology roadmap” towards its shift to clean energy. The Department of Energy (DOE) suggests Filipinos slowly make the change using environment-friendly products. It notes the relevance of using transition fuels like natural gas before changing to renewables and tapping into other resources, like nuclear and hydrogen.
Although relatively clean-burning, natural gas isn’t a renewable source. Malampaya Field, the Philippines’ only domestic fuel source, will face commercial depletion within several years. It comes at a concerning time, with the global supply tightening due to the wake of disruptions in the market, as most of the world weans itself from its dependence on Russian-sourced gas.
The DOE plans to introduce emerging technologies to the local power mix, including nuclear and hydrogen. However, the jury’s still out as the agency seeks more cost-effective options.
Besides shifting to renewable energy, the local government, through its agencies, can begin campaigns educating Filipinos about the benefit, use, and origins, prompting more interest and research on the resource for domestic application.
Technology always brings new changes to society, with many of its developments benefitting the community for generations. As the country progresses as a significant player in the tech industry, its stakeholders tap into local and foreign ideas to promote sustainable technology within its sectors.
With government mandate and private effort, the Philippines is well on its way to transitioning the local technology landscape that combines green efforts with intelligent advancements.