DAGUPAN CITY — Former Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla maintains that operating the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) will be a costly option for the country in its effort to prevent energy crisis and ensure sufficient power throughout the archipelago.

In a press conference here Tuesday, Petilla said that based on his computation before he resigned as Energy secretary in September 2015, the consumers can only save at most 30 centavos per kilowatt if the Manila Electric Corporation (Meralco) will operate BNPP, which is currently selling electricity to its consumers at P11.50 per kilowatt.

The BNPP is only 600-megawatt plant compared to Meralco’s needs of 6,000 megawatts, said Petilla.

Maintaining consumers can only save 30 centavos if BNPP is operated, Petilla said that if consumers are seeking the trimming down of electric cost to P5 per kilowatt from the current P11.50 per kilowatt, then there should be at least five nuclear plants across the country.

“If there are already five nuclear power plants and not only BNPP, then there should be a national policy or a law passed by Congress adopting nuclear energy in the country. said.

He added that if there is any law passed, it should be straightly worded and would allow no room for misinterpretation, if this can be had.

But he has doubt if the nation can have that policy because 30 minutes when the people learned that there is a move to revive BNPP, he (Petilla) is certain that one would be filing a petition seeking the issuance of Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) to stop the project. PNA/