Blog Archives

The picture on my blog banner was the biggest “F” of them all

Have you ever wondered where the picture from my banner post was taken? It was taken at the NGCP Substation inside in the Kalayaan Power Plant complex in Laguna, Philippines sometime February or March of 2011.

sf6-stock

It was my first foray to be part of a CDM Validation team as an observer, technically no, since I got my Lead GHG Verification course in September 2011.  I was just the “dakilang alalay”  or slave of Adarne Crispo, carrying with me our personal protective equipment or just proof reading the CDM Validation report to be submitted to the UNFCCC CDM Registry.

My mentor-mentee relationship with Mr. Crispo is somewhat complicated, because I am not sure what is the concrete outcome. I have no idea what competence I have gained in the complicated field of CDM Validation/Verification or even GHG Verification of Corporate GHG Inventories.  Nothing moved forward, as if somebody is stopping my growth on purpose, even my Lead Auditor qualification in ISO 14001 was shelved for three years, even my qualification in GLAD was purposely not updated.  Anyway there is Karma, if my designated operational entity does not want me in their roster,  I can always move forward with confidence, and I have. Though things seemed like I have thrown it on the back burner, that is still my ultimate career goal.

The CDM registry is already closed for emission reduction projects, people are now talking about Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action, Intended Nationally Determined Contributions  and after COP 21 comes the Nationally Determined Contributions. Everyone’s anticipating the ratification of the Paris Agreements, but the Philippines seems lukewarm about it. The concept may not be fully understood by the current leadership, maybe our DENR Secretary can show some good animated materials for the president’s appreciation.   I am very happy now at this point in time working to support some of these efforts.

The Validation  of the CDM project on SF6 Emission Reduction in High Voltage Transmission will always be my first and somehow last CDM Validation project.  I was working at the back-office technically supporting Mr. Crispo, though we would hate each other every now and then, I never really took it personally, unless of course he did. Working on the validation project gave me a strong technical foundation on the nature of SF6, as the most potent greenhouse gas considered by the IPCC.  It is relatively easy to monitor and measure since its emission calculation methodology is mass balance.  Uncertainty is somewhat low, based on the API 2009 GHG compendium. Being in the validation/verification component  of the project, the focus was strengthening the quality of data on SF6 use and looking more into the maintenance processes of High Voltage Electrical Systems.

I was able to use that knowledge in auditing Geothermal, Natural Gas and Coal Fired power plants on their quality and environmental management systems. I have realized that its high GWP was not always considered environmentally significant, due to absence of a local regulatory framework. However, its significance in terms of cost is always highlighted.  A cylinder can cost around PHP 300,000 to PHP 500,000 in the Philippines, the add-on in terms of shipment cost due its nature as a Dangerous Cargo in the EU. Maybe the Paris Agreements can change this in the long run.  Not to lower cost but to force users to conserve a valuable and at the same time, a dangerous resource.

SF6 was not included in the national GHG inventory of the Philippines.  It is not a halocarbon, it is an F-Gas but the Second National Communication at base year 2000 have not considered it even if it is grouped together with HFC and PFC. Some people would call me crazy for my high regard of this F-Gas. Even now working on HFCs and PFCs, I never fail to mention SF6 as the most potent F-Gas of it all. Without a proper inventory, no one will really kow how much we really use this stuff and how much the Philippines is currently emitting GHGs from SF6.

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October 9, 2016 · 4:32 am

Seoul Vacation 2014

SK Spring 2014 113

Ah! Seoul in spring! I advanced my holy week vacation and had a promotional flight to Seoul, South Korea at a time when drones were discovered from their northern brothers. I have been very much pissed off by a rejection letter for an employment application.  Some executive headhunters can be mean and lazy, rather than commend me about my qualification, she just have to reiterate that the position is already closed a few months back but it is still publicly posted  given their dumb mistake.

Should I file a complaint? Complaining complaining complaining…walking around 5 degrees C weather can be a challenge, I am from the tropics, so not used to something below 15 degrees C but I can stand 40 degrees C. My trip to Korea is to have a break from it all but after getting drenched in rain at Namsan Park, I have to find shelter down the hill immediately. Extreme chill can lead to hypothermia.

Seoul Vacation Part 2 031

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April 5, 2014 · 1:02 pm

Toys

Toys

Have you ever surrendered yourself to the supervision of someone expecting that it will be for the best but ended up feeling used? this is the point in my life that I feel like an utter failure. Asking God why why why?  Why do I feel that I deserve more.   I believe I am capable of doing a lot more things for the greater good of mankind, but I was forced to mediocre and pathetic tasks.  Is this the point of mean time, the point where I feel I am no longer creating value for myself, for my country and the common good.   Am I good, only the bad have been highlighted  and  I feel I don’t belong.  I deserve to be in a place where I can be respected and my potentials are maximized.  I am constantly praying for that place, I feel I am just wasting my time right now. Time is such a precious resource to be wasted and I don’t want to waste something I believe is very valuable and nothing can make up for lost time.

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March 30, 2014 · 1:41 am

Tacloban was at risk no matter what

Tacloban was at risk

In October 2012, my colleagues and I entered Tacloban City flooded after a stormy night. No one expected that after a year the strongest typhoon recorded in history as of now will sweep over the city and turn everything into  ruins and the city in chaos. In my travels, I have been thankful that I was not scheduled to work during times of  disaster but it was sad that I have to look back meet wonderful people and hear news either they are missing or have become casualties of the disaster.

The climate has indeed changed. That is the truth. This is the new normal, we keep on talking about it and talking about yet never had the discipline to act upon it and adapt to the changes that is now occurring.  At this point in time, I am just lucky, lucky that a disaster of similar magnitude has not yet struck upon me but going through my previous posts, the flooding I experienced in my residence last July and August are the new normal and the risks that Cagayan de Oro or Compostela Valley have experienced has a a high likelihood of occurrence. Even my own family does not believe that we are at risk.

My family believes that climate change is about crazy people and I have made it my career of choice, that is how most Filipinos think.

It just so happened I’m on the mitigation side not on the adaptation side. Being lucky is not enough, being prepared is essential and adapting is mandatory. 

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November 14, 2013 · 11:42 am

Beyond The Rolling Hills

Beyond The Rolling Hills

Just got back from Malandag, Sarangani Province in Mindanao. We took a land trip to Davao City and the flight back to Manila was horrible. We have to go through a three to four hour delay due to bad weather. Davao City was on halt due to flooding. Upland in Sarangani, flooding is not an issue but the lack of forest cover is sure less protection from  a heavy down pour down  hill.

Clear cut land is a usual site in my travels and it has been common in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.  Land has not been properly utilized to maximize its benefits. People in power and  the mass and hordes of proverty stricken people have brazenly utilized land towards degradation without foreseeing the possible tragedies that may lie ahead. Regardless of periodic and seasonal tragedies that were already experienced, not much has changed. Population grows grows grows and land is used brazenly, may be this is what we really want small steps towards our total destruction or we just make ourselves blind because not knowing is not hurting.

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November 1, 2013 · 1:38 pm

Remote Locations

Spent four days in a remote location. I was trying to practice night photography during one of those free times at night.  Power plants have to be in remote locations which is the norm but no one can stop population growth and urbanization that one day, remote locations are no longer remote anymore. We may have to move these power generating facilities offshore.  If we come to think of it, maybe the aggregate impact of population growth and uncontrolled urbanization without adequate land use planning may emit more greenhouse gas than a thermal power plant, just may be, but without the proper inventory we really could not tell.

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October 6, 2013 · 12:29 pm

Climate Change Adapting

Climate Change Adapting

 

Walking home after an appointment was cancelled.  Please, don’t let us believe that this is God’s Wrath for corruption, this is just another impact of rising sea levels.  Climate change is already here, we just need to adapt to it.

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August 20, 2013 · 12:25 pm