, JANUARY 24, 2007 (INTERNET PRESS  RELEASE) First all-female Philippine Everest Team, pro-renewable energy groups take on the Philippine Senate on passage of RE Bill.

Members of the first all-female Philippine Everest team and pro- renewable energy groups took on the Philippine Senate today in a bid to spur the immediate passage of the Renewable Energy (RE) Bill in the Upper House. Spearheaded by the Renewable Energy Coalition, World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-Philippines) and Greenpeace, the groups conducted a 20-kilometer run from the MRT North Avenue Station in Quezon City, concluding in front of the Senate building in Pasay City.

The Renewable Energy Run, led by mountaineers Noelle Wenceslao and Karina Doyondon, together with other Filipino athletes, celebrities and supporters of the RE Bill, was timed for the opening of the year’s first Senate session. Upon reaching the Senate premises, the groups proceeded with the handover of more than 350,000 petitions from around the country in support of the RE Bill, and the presentation of a symbolic key and giant ballot box with the words “Boto ng Bayan para sa RE Bill”.

“We are telling our Senators that the people are clamoring for an RE Bill, and the passage of such is confirmation of the Senators’ sincere commitment to the environment, to the country, and to the people. The immediate passage of this bill is the Senate’s vote for a better and safer world, and will be the first step towards ensuring energy security for our future generations.” said Roslyn Arayata of the Renewable Energy Coalition.

“This landmark legislation is urgent and extremely crucial to the future of our country and the planet. Renewable Energy is an opportunity. As the true cost of coal dependence becomes more and more evident, all other countries will jump onto the Renewable Energy bandwagon. But before any of this can happen, an enabling policy platform must be set in place. This is the Renewable Energy Bill, which will not only have a positive economic impact on the Philippines but will set the precedent for other ASEAN countries to follow our example. Our President should certify this landmark bill as urgently as possible.” Lory Tan, CEO of WWF-Philippines added.

The RE Bill has been on the drawing board for the past 10 years before the House of Representatives finally passed its version last September 2006. With only three weeks of sessions remaining, the Senate is yet to pass its own version of the RE Bill that will be consolidated with the lower house version under the bicameral conference committee.

“The RE bill is at the last stretch before the summit. The Senate has the opportunity to finally enact into law a bill that will make a difference in the lives of every Filipino, and even every creature on this planet. This is not the time to turn back and let that opportunity slip away. The Philippine Senate must now show its political will: it must prioritize the RE Bill and Congress must guarantee its passage into law before the end of the 13th Congress,” said Jasper Inventor of Greenpeace.

The Renewable Energy Coalition, as well as its advocacy allies WWF and Greenpeace, has been actively campaigning for the passage of the Renewable Energy Bill for the past years. Among WWF and the Coalition’s well-publicized efforts is the Positibong Alternatibo ang Renewable Energy (P.A.R.E. ni Juan) signature campaign, which to date has collected more than 350,000 signatures from various civic, environmental and youth groups nationwide. Greenpeace’s prominent initiatives include the Star Power for Clean Power and “Pilipinas, Go Renewable!” campaigns.

The Renewable Energy Run is an initiative of the Renewable Energy Coalition with the help of its partners in advocacy including WWF, Greenpeace, SolarGeneration Pilipinas, Youth for Sustainable Development Alliance, Brotherhood of Destiny, Kabalai, Young Artists Fellowship for the Environment (YAFE), Partnership for Clean Air and the Municipal Government of Angono Rizal.

Contacts: Media Coordinators: Lea Guerrero (Greenpeace), +63 916 374 4969 Grace Duran (Greenpeace), +63 917 886 0662, +63 2 434 7034 loc 104

RE Coalition: Roslyn Arayata: Pare ni Juan Coordinator (WWF), 0919 242 0956

Greenpeace: Jasper Inventor, Climate and Energy Campaigner, +63 917 300 9567

-- Lea Guerrero Media Campaigner Greenpeace Southeast Asia tel: +63 2 434 7034 fax: +63 2 434 7035 mob: +63 916 374 4969 skype: leaguerrero lea.guerrero@ph.greenpeace.org

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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