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Power outages might last until April 21

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Friday, April 12th, 2019

The Department of Energy (DOE) has announced on Thursday (April 11) that the unplanned power outages might continue until April 21 “due to major generation inadequacy”.

READ: Gatchalian worries over possible brownout during elections due to low power supply reserves

Some generation facilities, however, are expected to go online before April 21 including South Luzon Thermal Energy Corporation (SLTEC) Unit 1. It is set to go online on April 13, according to the alert issued by the The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP).

Team Energy Corporation Sual Unit 1 is also expected to go online on April 13 while the SMC Consolidated Power Corporation (SMCCPC) Limay Unit 2 and the Pagbilao Energy Corporation (PEC) Pagbilao Unit 3 are expected to go online on April 16.

READ: Luzon grid on red alert again

The Southwest Luzon Power Generation Corporation (SLPGC) shutdown was caused by technical complications in the vibration of the primary air fan. It is expected to resume regular operations by April 21.

“The DOE called for an emergency meeting with NGCP last night and will conduct a follow-up meeting today with the ERC, NGCP, IEMOP, and MERALCO to coordinate efforts and address the situation,” according to their statement on Facebook.—Aileen Cerrudo

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DOE to push through with implementation of fuel unbundling

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Thursday, June 27th, 2019

A gas station attendant holding a fuel nozzle

The Department of Energy (DOE) said it will push through with implementing Department Circular (DC) 2019-05-0008 which mandates oil companies to unbundle its fuel cost.

“Based on legal procedure, the department circular will take effect since the court is yet to decide on the petition,” according to Energy Assistant Secretary Robert Uy on Tuesday (June 25).

Through fuel unbundling the public will be informed on how much an oil company pays for cost of import, freight, refining, storage, taxes as well as the profit they make.

This will keep oil prices in check to see if there are any abuses being committed in the implementation of price changes.

Several oil companies have already expressed their opposition against the DOE circular because it will eventually lead to oil price regulation.

“While the DOE’s mandate is to monitor oil price movements, we believe that the circular leads the industry back to the path of regulation,” their statement reads.

The Philippine Institute of Petroleum Inc. (PIP) has already filed a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against the implementation of the DOE circular.

At present, the Oil Deregulation Law prohibits the government from controlling oil prices. However the DOE does not share the same sentiment.

According to DOE Asec. Leonido Pulido III, the Oil Deregulation Law has an expressed provision in section 15. This gives the secretary of energy the authority to ask oil companies to provide information on oil prices.

“Ito ang disenyo ng batas para makapagbigay po ng mga rekomendasyon ang Department of Energy sa Kongreso ukol sa pagbabago o pag-amyenda sa ating mga batas regarding oil prices, (This is the law’s design so that the Department of Energy can provide recommendation to Congress on how to amend laws regarding oil prices),” he said.

Meanwhile, Laban Konsyumer President Vic Dimagiba said it is the public’s right to know how oil companies determine oil prices.

“Wala naman sila dapat itago, nire-report din nila ang kanilang profit sa SEC at sa stocks exchange. Huwag naman sana magkatotoo na ang presyo ng produktong petrolyo, masasabi nating ‘overpriced’ (They should have nothing to hide, they report their profit to the SEC and stocks exchange anyway. I hope there won’t come a time when oil will be deemed overpriced),” he said.

There will be a hearing on July 2 regarding the petition of oil companies to halt DOE’s circular on fuel unbundling.—AAC (with reports from Mon Jocson)

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NGCP: Luzon Grid under yellow alert

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Tuesday, June 4th, 2019

Courtesy : storyblocks

The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) on Tuesday placed the Luzon grid on yellow alert amid thinning power reserves.

In an advisory, the NGCP said the alert will be in place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

A yellow alert notice means operating reserves have dropped below the required 647 megawatts (MW) contingency in Luzon or equivalent to the largest unit online. 

Luzon grid status, 04 June 2019:Yellow Alert10:00AM-4:00PMAvailable Capacity – 11,764MWPeak Demand – 10,831MWDetails on the cause to be announced by the Department of Energy (DOE) later in the day.

Posted by National Grid Corporation of the Philippines on Monday, 3 June 2019

The Luzon grid’s available capacity is 11,764 MW against an expected peak demand of 10,831 MW.

The NGCP said details on the cause will be announced by the Department of Energy (DOE) later in the day.

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DOE assures steady power supply on election day, entire week

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, May 10th, 2019

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)

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