MANILA, Philippines - Bad news for consumers. Electricity rates are up this month due to a considerable hike in generation charge of P0.54 per kilowatt hour (kWh).
For those consuming 101 kWh, this will add P54.54 to their June electricity bill. For those consuming 200 kWh, it will add P108 to their bill; while those consuming 300 kWh will pay P162 more.
For those whose monthly consumption is 400 kWh, this will mean an additional P216, while those averaging 500 kWh will pay P270 more.
According to Meralco, this is already the highest increase in generation charge for the year.
Meralco head for utility economics Larry Fernandez said the culprit is the staggering increase in spot market prices.
On the average, prices at the wholesale electricity spot market rose by an average P16.30/kwh, the highest for the year.
Meralco said the higher priced electricity was brought about by the emergency shutdown of several coal plants like Sual and Pagbilao. These were replaced by more expensive plants like Malaya and Limay thermal plants which are powered by the more expensive bunker or diesel oil.
It also did not help that demand rose to its peak of 5,633 megawatts, the highest so far even surpassing 5,374 mw demand in 2010 during the El Nino phenomenon.
With the onset of the rainy season, Meralco says the generation charge will likely go down in July.