DOE: Power supply situation in PH may improve this week

Robie de Guzman   •   April 16, 2019   •   1347

MANILA, Philippines – The power supply situation in the country is expected to improve as more power plants resume operations this week, the Department of Energy (DOE) said.

DOE said in an advisory on Tuesday that the Luzon grid is now operating under normal conditions after the reactivation of Sual power plant Unit 1. The plant went out last April 9 after experiencing a boiler pump leak.

The Luzon grid was placed on red and yellow alert status for consecutive days after several power plants went offline for various reasons.

It was placed again on red alert on Monday.

READ: Luzon grid on yellow alert for over 10 hours

READ: DOE: Brownouts possible as Luzon grid goes red alert again

A red alert means there is an existing generation deficiency or zero ancillary services, while yellow alert means there are low power reserves against high power demand.

Rotational brownouts were also implemented in parts of Metro Manila and nearby provinces to manage the insufficient power supply.

As of Tuesday, DOE said three power plants are yet to go online after going into forced outage. These are the SMC Consolidated Power Corporation (SMCCPC) Limay Unit 2, Southwest Luzon Power Generation Corporation (SLPGC) Unit 2 and the Pagbilao Energy Corporation Unit 3.

DOE Undersecretary Felix William “Wimpy” Fuentebella said in a press briefing on Monday that the power supply situation in the country is expected to improve starting Wednesday.

Fuentebella also expressed hope that the decline in demand during the Lenten season will further improve the situation. – Robie de Guzman

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)

DOE warns suspension of oil excise tax if global price hike continues

Marje Pelayo   •   September 18, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The government may suspend the implementation of excise tax in oil products if global prices continue to soar in the coming months as a result of the recent drone attacks on two large oil facilities in Saudi Arabia.

According to the Department of Energy (DOE), they cannot tell yet as to how much the price hike may be because it will depend on the trading price in the world market.

Nevertheless, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi assured that local oil companies have enough supply of oil which can last up to 30 days.

In the event that oil prices soar, excise tax in oil may be suspended as provisioned in the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law 1.

“Meron tayo dyan na safety net na sinasabi na kapag yung presyo ng langis in the world market, yung pag-aangkat natin breaches the 80 dollar per barrel in 3 consecutive months, we might intend to suspend excise tax,” Cusi explained.

But the official noted that as of now, there is a slim chance for the price hike, especially so that Saudi Aramco has announced to resume its normal operation in September.

Meanwhile, the DOE is also preparing for the possible adverse effect of the oil price hike to the impeding maintenance shutdown of Malampaya Power Plant next month.

Once the Malampaya is shut down, power distributors will have to buy electricity from oil-powered plants which may still lead to a power rate increase.

“Iyan pinag-aralan na natin iyan. Number 1, we want to make sure that there will be no power interruption because of the maintenance. Number two, that there will be no spike in price because of the maintenance,” Cusi said.

“Kaya lang syempre itong misbehavior ng price in the world market, talagang pagsipa noon mapi-feel natin,” he added.

Aside from diesel power plants, coal and hydropower plants are among the alternative power sources that the government is eyeing. – MNP (with details from Joan Nano)

DOE prepares for possible effects of Saudi oil site attack

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 17, 2019

The Department of Energy (DOE) is preparing for the possible impact of the recent Saudi oil attacks on the Philippines’ oil sector.

Based on the Facebook post on Monday (September 17), the DOE said they already held an emergency meeting at their headquarters in Taguig.

According to the energy department they are closely monitoring the situation about the incident and will keep the public informed of any developments.

READ: Analyst fears disruption of Saudi oil supply could bring ‘dire’ consequences

“We are seeking to ensure that the energy family will be sufficiently prepared to face the potential impact of this unfortunate incident, if any, on the country,” their post state.

Reports say the ‘large-scale’ drone attack can disrupt more than 5% of global oil supply.—AAC

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