Senator Win Gatchalian called on the Department of Energy (DOE) and power utilities to draw up contingency measures to address the imminent power interruptions, especially during the election period, due to thinning power supply.
The re-electionist senator urged the DOE to activate the interruptible load program (ILP), a voluntary and demand-side management program that allows consumers to operate their generating sets to manage demand in the power grid.
The conduct of close monitoring of the maintenance schedule of power plants should likewise be undertaken to minimize the risk of unscheduled outages, Gatchalian said, adding that hydropower generators are the only ones allowed to conduct power plant maintenance in the peak quarter.
Gatchalian also called on the Energy Regulatory Committee (ERC) to strictly impose sanctions on erring power plants and should oversee the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines’ (NGCP) compliance to its obligation of procuring ancillary supply to provide sufficient levels of ancillary services (AS) or power reserves for contingencies such as the looming supply deficiency.
“What we want is an assurance, amid claims from various sectors of thinning power reserves leading to the election period and even weeks after that, that there is a back-up plan in the event that there will be tripping of power plants that could aggravate the supply situation. And with Metro Manila now under Alert Level 1, we must anticipate higher electricity consumption,” said Gatchalian.
“We have to explore all possible solutions. Assuring power supply stability is the DOE’s main responsibility. It is crucial that necessary measures are in place taking into account all eventualities to guarantee the continuous supply of electricity in this year’s national and local elections to ensure the credibility, transparency and delivery of fast and accurate results that is reflective of the genuine will of the people. Nakasalalay sa darating na halalan ang kinabukasan ng higit sa 100 milyong Pilipino sa susunod na anim na taon,” he added.