Senate chief calls for greater, peaceful use of nuclear technology

Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III on Saturday called for greater use of nuclear technology in the Philippines.

The Senate President is currently in Europe to study peaceful uses of nuclear technology with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), an international agency that facilitates technical and scientific cooperation among nations for the peaceful use of nuclear science and technology, located in Vienna, Austria.

“Nuclear technology is associated with images of widespread destruction, but it is also a very powerful tool for progress that the Philippines should learn how to utilize for our own benefit”, said Pimentel.

The Senate President met with IAEA officials and was briefed on nuclear legislation in other countries.

Pimentel, a graduate of BS Mathematics and a former DOST scholar, also visited the IAEA laboratory in Seibersdorf, Austria, the Slovenian Nuclear Safety Administration, and the Krško Nuclear Power Plant in Krško, Slovenia.

The Senate President said, “We can use nuclear technology not just to generate electricity, but also for pest control, food & environment protection, plant breeding and genetics, soil and water management, animal protection and health, and dosimetry, or fighting cancer.”

Pimentel was accompanied by Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy, Undersecretary Donato Marcos of the Department of Energy (DOE), and Dr. Carlo Arcilla, Ph.D, the Director of the Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (PNRI).

Pimentel said, “We should not deny the benefits of this technology to Filipinos. I will be working closely with PNRI to see how the Senate can help them improve the quality of life of our countrymen.” Senate