Clean, green, no carbon emissions, no air pollution, no negative health impacts, abundant, unlimited.
These are what has been said about renewable energy.
Reporting for Rappler on this form of energy that can do no wrong has led me to discover that, as in all things, it's far too easy to see the world in binary opposition.
There are other things being said about renewable energy: unstable, unreliable, expensive, a mere add-on, carbon-emitting.
An engineer I met during a visit to a solar farm under construction in Negros Occidental worked for 3 years in a coal-fired plant in South Africa before signing on for renewable energy projects. He told me renewable energy isn't ready to stand on its own yet.
For many, many years to come, the world will continue to rely heavily on fossil fuel energy sources like coal, oil and natural gas, simply because as things stand, renewable energy is still unable to meet the monstrous energy demands of the world.
His statement echoes the words of no less than the Renewable Energy Management Bureau director of the country, Mario Marasigan.
"We cannot do away with fossil fuels, at least in our lifetimes. The demand [for energy in the Philippines] is still increasing and that's why we still have to accommodate coal," he told me.