Quezon City, Philippines: ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability Southeast Asia Secretariat (ICLEI SEAS) participated in a four-day inception workshop for the Access to Sustainable Energy in the Philippines – Clean Energy Living Laboratories (ASEP-CELLS) held from 20 to 22 and 25 March 2019. The workshop, which convened at least 35 participants from ICLEI SEAS, Ateneo School of Government (ASoG), Manila Observatory (MO), University of San Carlos (USC), and Xavier University (XU), revisited the project design, harmonized expectations, and clarified the roles and contributions of each partner.
ASEP-CELLS, a European Union-funded project, aims to promote energy access, energy efficiency, and renewable energy by setting up a knowledge management system (i.e., a databank to host research-related outputs), enhancing the capacity of champions such as policymakers, and raising public awareness to sustain political commitment. It is also considered relevant to the 2012-2030 Philippine Energy Plan that upholds the vision “Energy Access for More.” The plan seeks to advance affordable and reliable energy services in the country, especially among the rural areas. At the international level, it is related to the Sustainable Energy for All initiative and the Sustainable Development Goal 7 which are advocating for closing energy access gaps and clean energy.
ICLEI SEAS will contribute to the project by fostering cooperation and learning among partner local government units (LGUs) through international congresses and events. It will also lead in building the capacities of involved LGUs to mainstream energy plans in their Local Climate Change Action Plan. ICLEI’s outputs such as case studies and policy papers from its Ambitious City Promises, a project promoting low emission development strategies at the local level, may also prove useful to facilitate small-scale demonstration activities of ASEP-CELLS.
During the workshop, an ad hoc committee composed of representatives from each implementer was formed to finalize the logical framework which will be used for monitoring and evaluating the project’s progress and results. Implementation activities is expected to commence by April 2019.
The event also served as a platform to clarify the European Union’s administrative and finance policies governing the project and to establish a commonality for all partners to adhere to.