Still a pipe dream: No funds in 2023 budget for Bataan nuclear plant revival

The administration isn’t willing to put money in just yet for President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s plan to revive the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP).

In a Palace press briefing Wednesday (August 31), Budget Secretary Amenah Pangandaman said there’s no allocation for BNPP under the proposed P5.29-trillion national budget for 2023.

The white elephant structure, which was built during the term of Marcos’ father and namesake, was never commissioned even if billions of dollars were spent for its construction.

Despite Marcos’ openness to pursue nuclear energy, experts said the BNPP needs to be thoroughly assessed to see if the facility is still viable after being unused for decades.

The Department of Energy is getting P2.22 billion under the 2023 spending plan, which will be spent mostly on developing renewable and downstream energy sources. Power generation, transmission and distribution remain in the hands of the private sector.