THE ENERGY department has so far remitted P4.15 billion from its Energy Regulations 1-94 (ER 1-94) program to help local government units (LGU) stem the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the agency said in a statement on Friday.
Broken down, P1.05 billion went to the Development and Livelihood Fund, Electrification Fund, P2.07 billion went to the Reforestation Watershed Management Fund and P1.03 billion went to the Environment Enhancement Fund.
Under the ER 1-94 program, power generating companies are required to give one centavo for every kilowatt-hour of sales to their host communities to fund electrification, livelihood and development projects in the area.
Earlier this year, the DoE allowed for these funds to be used in helping LGUs fight the virus. The funds have been used for feeding programs, personal protective equipment, medical supplies and equipment, and the construction of medical facilities, among others.
Initial data from the DoE showed at least P462 million of ER 1-94 funds were directly remitted by generation companies to their host LGUs as of Sept. 30.
The department added that it is processing the transfer of an additional P278 million in ER 1-94 funds to host communities and regions.
“This unprecedented experience has given the energy sector the opportunities for creativity, flexibility and ingenuity to reorganize, on the local and national level, and find innovative ways of providing essential health services to all,” the department said. — Angelica Y. Yang