DOE assures steady power supply on election day, entire week

Robie de Guzman   •   May 10, 2019   •   1363

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Energy (DOE) on Friday assured there will be enough power supply during the conduct of the midterm elections on May 13.

DOE spokesperson Undersecretary Wimpy Fuentebella said at a press briefing that a task force election has already been activated since February to ensure stable, uninterrupted and reliable energy supply before, during and after elections.

The task force, created under Department Circular No. DC2018-05-0014, has eight members including the National Electrification Administration (NEA), National Power Corporation (Napocor), National Transmission Corporation, Philippine National Oil Company, Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation, Philippine Electricity Market Corporation, National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP), and the Manila Electric Company (Meralco). Six other supporting organizations are also onboard.

Although measures on energy supply have already been laid out, the DOE said, the energy sector will continue to keep a tight watch in case of power fluctuations during the election day.

“Ina-assure po natin ang ating mga kababayan that the energy family is working 24/7 not only for monitoring but we’ve also deployed our personnel to make sure na yung mga kuryente galing sa planta papunta sa mga polling places at sa mga canvassing stations ay magkakaroon ng sapat na kuryente,” Fuentebella said.

The DOE is also set to open a command center in its headquarters in Taguig City to receive reports and complaints on the power supply, ensuring immediate power restoration in case of outages.

Meralco, for its part, prepared 300 flood lights and generator sets to be used in polling precincts in case of power interruption. At least 300 linemen will also be deployed to inspect Meralco’s power facilities.

READ: Meralco on general alert during elections

Meralco also inspected the electrical wiring and other facilities in voting and canvassing centers.

“We’re actually 100 percent complete in terms of inspecting ‘yung mga facilites ng Meralco especially those serving the polling and canvassing centers,” said Primo Alonzo, head of Meralco’s Energy Management.

The NGCP, meanwhile, assured to monitor the power supply situation in case yellow and red alert notices will be issued over the Luzon grid.

“In case na mayroong disturbance na mangyayari, na hopefully ay wala, mayroon kaming naka-deploy na resources, tao, tsaka available na equipment, to mobilize doon sa site para ma-minimize yung disturbance,” said Santiago Dimaliwat, Vice President and Head of NGCP systems operations.

NEA, on the other hand, told provincial electric cooperatives to defer any power plant preventive maintenance works to avoid power interruptions in their franchise areas.

“We have also advised the electric cooperatives not to conduct preventive maintenance a week before and after the elections in order to ensure continuous power sa kanilang franchise areas,” said Artis Nikki Tortola, NEA Deputy Administrator.

In case a power interruption is inevitable, the energy sector said, polling centers will be spared from manual load dropping to ensure that polling and counting of votes will not be disrupted. (with details from Joan Nano)

Experts urge use of energy efficient appliances as power rate hike looms

Marje Pelayo   •   November 28, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Amid the looming increase in electricity charges, Energy officials are encouraging the public to use energy efficient appliances to conserve electricity.

“So we become more efficient, power becomes more affordable, the demand for power decreases, the impact that it has on the environment also will become better,” noted Assistant Secretary Engr. Redentor Delola of the Department of Energy.

Meanwhile, experts advise consumers to carefully consult for product safety before purchasing any appliance.

“Hinihikayat namin ang mga kababayan natin na bago sila magtayo o bumili ng kahit ano na naaayon sa electrical engineering, kailangan nilang komonsulta sa tamang propresyon, mga electrical engineers,” said former national president of the Institute of Integrated Electrical Engineers of the Philippines, Inc. (IIEE), Engr. Arthur Escalante.

The Duterte administration supports efforts to promote energy efficiency.

Just this year, Republic Act 11285 or the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act was approved.

Under the law, all government agencies are ordered to observe efficient use of electricity in all of their facilities and projects.

Meanwhile, inspirations from some energy efficient technology can be viewed at the 44th IIEE Annual National Convention and Expo 2019 happening at SMX Convention Center in Pasay City which runs until Saturday (November 30). – MNP (with details from Asher Cadapan Jr.)

Diesel, gasoline prices to go down Tuesday

Robie de Guzman   •   October 28, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Prices of petroleum products are expected to go down anew this week, marking the second consecutive weekly rollback.

In separate advisories, Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp. and Petro Gazz said they are cutting prices of gasoline by P0.45 per liter and diesel by P0.10.

The price cut will take effect on Tuesday at 6:00 a.m.

Cleanfuel stations on Sunday implemented a slash in the price of its gasoline by P0.60 and diesel by P0.20 per liter.

Other oil companies have yet to announce any price adjustment.

DOE wants oil firms to explain discrepancies in price adjustments

Robie de Guzman   •   October 2, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Energy (DOE) has ordered 13 oil firms to explain the discrepancies it noted in the rollback implemented for gasoline and diesel prices.

The DOE said in a statement issued Wednesday it issued show-cause orders “in view of the apparent difference in the oil price rollback calculations” between the department and oil companies.

“Mas mababa po ‘yung rollback nila by about P0.22 for gasoline and about P0.06 for diesel and we want them to explain it,” DOE Assistant Secretary Leonido Pulido said in a separate press briefing in Malacañang.  

“Hindi naman po namin sinasabi na mali sila but we want to give them the opportunity to explain to us bakit po ganun,” he added.

Recipients have until Monday, October 7 to formally respond to the department.

Aside from oil companies, the DOE also asked importers and suppliers of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) to explain the amount of price hike they implemented, which is higher compared to prices in the international market.

Pulido said the issuance of the show-cause orders is in line with its mandate to protect consumer welfare and ensure fair oil industry practices. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

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