'Enforcement issues' on power players contributed to lack of supply: DOE


Posted at Jun 01 2021 09:01 AM | Updated as of Jun 01 2021 09:05 AM

'Enforcement issues' on power players contributed to lack of supply: DOE 1
Linemen work on electric cables in Purok 2, Barangay Culiat Quezon City on December 30, 2020. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - The Department of Energy said Tuesday "enforcement issues" on power players contributed to the lack of power supply in Luzon.

The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines was unable to comply with its ancillary services, which is included in its obligations under its franchise, said Energy Undersecretary William Fuentebella.

"Ang pinakanakikita nating malaking bagay na pwede magincrease ng capacity o magdagdag ng planta ay 'yung pagcomply ng NGCP sa ancillary services," he told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.

(NGCP's compliance to ancillary services should increase capacity.)

"Napuna ito ni (Energy) Secretary (Alfonso) Cusi nung joint congressional energy commission dahil may nakikita tayong 
kakulangan ng around 1,000, I think he mentioned 1,800 megawatts (sa reserba)... Ang reserba po ay parang 'pag naflat ang gulong, merong papalit."

(Secretary Cusi observed this during the joint congressional energy commission because we saw that we lack around 1,000-- I think he mentioned 1,800 megawatts--in power reserves. The reserve acts as a backup.)

The DOE had informed the Cabinet of possible lack of power supply as early as last week of March, Fuentebella said.

"Sinabi nating pwedeng nagkakaroon ng enforcement issues dito sa power players dahil merong mga paraan kung papaano maiwasan ang problema natin sa kakulangan ng power supply," he said.

(We told them that there could be enforcement issues on power players because there are ways we can avoid lacking power supply.)

"Ngunit merong ding 'di mga sumusunod. Kaya sabi natin we need more enforcement. Kailangang mas pumasok na ang enforcement agencies tulad ng Energy Regulatory Commission, Philippine Competition Commission, at Department of Justice."

(Some power players do not follow. So we said we need more enforcement and urged enforcement agencies like Energy Regulatory Commission, Philippine Competition Commission, and Department of Justice to get involved.)

The agency on Monday said that besides the high heat index that pushed demand for power, maintenance work and unscheduled outages at key power plants in Luzon and low gas pressure from the Malampaya also contributed to power supply problems.

Grid status alerts will be raised over parts of Luzon from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., Tuesday, according to Fuentebella.

Cold storage facilities for COVID-19 vaccines are covered under NGCP's ancillary services and distribution utilities should ensure these remain unaffected, Fuentebella said.

These facilities should also have their own power generators, he added.

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