We are from the Philippine Movement for Climate Justice (PMCJ) and the Asian Peoples’ Movement for Debt and Development (APMDD). We represent grassroots communities, social movements, climate justice campaigners and civil society networks in the Philippines as well as in other countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

On your Annual Stockholders Meeting today, we appeal to your sense of responsibility and accountability to the Filipino people whom you service with electricity, and peoples of other countries who are also affected by your company's actions. We bring your attention to the life-threatening risks faced by our nation, our people and our entire planet due to climate change that, among others, is brought about by the reliance on fossil fuels for energy.

Filipinos, especially those living in poverty, are among those whose lives and livelihoods are extremely vulnerable to and constantly endangered by climate-change disasters. As calamities become more frequent and more severe, many communities and ecosystems, particularly those lacking in adaptive capabilities and infrastructure resilience, are left devastated and ruined.

It is an established scientific fact that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions has caused global warming and continues to exacerbate it. Hence, under the 2015 Paris Agreement, which is now a legally-binding instrument, almost 200 nations committed to reduce GHG emissions and to the goal of limiting the increase in global warming to below 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Despite this however, many private corporations continue to fund and embark on fossil fuel projects, including coal, the dirtiest among all sources of energy. MERALCO is one of them.

In 2017, Meralco Power Gen Corp. (MGen),the power generating unit of MERALCO, was reported to have invested P3.5 billion for two power projects. Officials said the company spent P2.8 billion for the 2x300-megawatt (MW) circulating fluidized bed coal-fired power plant in Subic, Zambales. Meanwhile, P700 million was already spent for the 2x600-MW ultra supercritical coal-fired power plant under wholly-owned subsidiary Atimonan One Energy Inc. (A1E).

The harsh impact of climate change cannot be over-emphasized. There is an urgent need to shift to renewable sources of energy in order to avert catastrophic climate disasters.

MERALCO and all other energy corporations must take a lead role and exercise full accountability for the future of the planet and the safety of communities. MERALCO and all other energy companies must put an immediate stop to new coal power projects.

We urge you, stockholders of MERALCO, to heed the urgent world-wide clamor to stop new coal-fired power plants and coal mines. We call on you to direct your company, MERALCO, to swiftly phase out from fossil fuel use, especially coal, and ensure a just transition to sustainable energy.

There is no other acceptable way.

Philippine Movement for Climate Change (PMCJ)
Asian Peoples’ Movement for Debt and Development (APMDD)
May 29, 2018
(photo credit: ABS-CBN News)

[This article is also published on APMDD’s FB page.]