Quezon City, 2 Feb 2012 — More civil society groups called for the rejection of the hundred-million-dollar clean technology loan which was diverted from a solar power generation initiative to an electric tricycle (e-trike) project of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
According to statements from Aksyon Klima Pilipinas, a national civil society network, “There appears to be potential misuse and abuse of the Clean Technology Fund. The dearth of consultation with different sectors, not just civil society, is deeply troubling.”
“A sustained dialogue would have cured what seem to be fundamental infirmities in the project design, which if left unchanged will adversely affect the country’s low carbon transport program in the long term,” the climate change advocacy group said.
Aksyon Klima wrote to the Trust Fund Committee of the Washington D.C.-based Clean Technology Fund (CTF) last Tuesday, just before the CTF Trust Fund Committee was expected to approve the decision.
“The reallocation of funds away from the innovative renewable energy programs in the Philippines — at a time when intervention from international funds for transformational energy programs is sorely needed in the country — is deplorable,” Elpidio Peria, Aksyon Klima convenor, wrote.
A total of $125 million was allocated last 2009 from the CTF administered by the ADB for the country’s renewable energy and energy efficiency program, but $101 million was reallocated late last year for the e-trikes project, with $24 million remaining for energy efficiency.
The Asia-wide civil society watchdog NGO Forum on the ADB has likewise communicated similar concerns about the ADB initiative with the CTF Trust Fund Committee. The Quezon City-based Freedom from Debt Coalition and Greenpeace, both Aksyon Klima members, have also released statements to media questioning the lack of consultation and other “serious technical concerns” plaguing the ADB project.
“The ADB’s manipulation of this project for its own benefit calls into question its sincerity in truly helping the country achieve its climate mitigation, technology and finance goals,” Peria, head of the General Santos-based BITS Policy Center, said in an interview.
Peria scored the DOE’s abdication of its duty “to exercise control over loan peddlers.” He quoted Department of Energy Undersecretary Loreta Ayson who responded to FDC’s inquiry over the agency’s ownership of the project, saying “The decision on how to deploy the e-trike financing is not within the Department’s authority but under the Asian Development Bank (ADB).”
“If this does not expose the authorship of the initiative, we don’t know what else will,” Peria said.
Aksyon Klima noted that certain flaws in the project design invite corruption.
“For instance, all vehicle components will be bid out save for the vehicle assembly stage. Yet there is no information as to the entity that will assemble 100,000 e-trikes, that will be, by the project’s schedule, given away to so-called ‘beneficiary lists’ identified by local government in 2013 — an election year — up to the 2016 presidential elections,” said Peria. ###
Aksyon Klima Pilipinas (AK) is a national network of more than 40 civil society organizations working on diverse climate and development-related issues.
The Clean Technology Fund (CTF), one of two multi-donor Climate Investment Funds, promotes scaled-up financing for demonstration, deployment and transfer of low-carbon technologies with significant potential for long-term greenhouse gas emissions savings. The CTF promotes programs for energy efficiency and for the power and transport sectors.
Contact: Denise Fontanilla, Advocacy Officer