Government eyes sustainable housing policies

The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) and Department of Energy (DOE) have collaborated with the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) to integrate sustainable, green and renewable measures in the country’s housing policies. 

The ERC and DOE signed a memorandum of understanding with DHSUD yesterday during the virtual launching of the PropTech Consortium of the Philippines Inc., a convergence of various leading companies/organizations that will leverage on digital innovation to help individuals or companies research, buy, sell, and manage real estate. 

“The Tripartite MOU seeks to support the sustainable and digital transformation of the housing industry by making it greener, resilient, digitally connected and more inclusive, as we fight and rise above the challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic and mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change,” ERC chairperson and CEO Agnes Devanadera said. 

Under the MOU, DSHUD shall engage the DOE and/or ERC in capacity building activities on DSHUD’s functions, including current policies and regulations for housing, human settlement, and urban development. 

The housing agency will also encourage stakeholders to undertake energy efficiency and conservation plans, programs and activities, and will also develop programs that will incentivize stakeholders in adhering to the requirements specified under the Guidelines on Energy Conserving Design of Buildings. 

For its part, the ERC will promote more digital transformation programs in the public sector to increase efficiency and transparency in securing permits and licenses.  

If needed, it will also develop and promulgate the relevant rules and regulations on new technologies that will create more utility savings for the renewable energy-powered communities.  

Also, ERC will collaborate with the DHSUD, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Local Government Units (LGUs) to establish programs in building solar-powered and solar net-metered communities all over the country. 

The DOE, meanwhile, will prepare, integrate, coordinate, supervise and control all plans, programs, projects and activities of the Government pertaining to energy exploration, development, utilization, distribution and conservation.  

It will also, among others, train and assist the DHSUD and its officials and personnel in the proper implementation of R.A. No. 11285 or the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act and its relevant policies, guidelines and procedures. 

“The MOU with the DHSUD and the DOE responds to the call of times as digital innovations has proliferated since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, being the best and safest means of communication. This cooperation will propel the country’s real estate industry into the globally competitive arena, as it integrates sustainable, resilient, and digital technologies,” Devanadera said.