DoE, ERC told: Audit power firms

DoE, ERC told: Audit power firms

A PHILIPPINE senator urged the Department of Energy (DoE) and the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) on Sunday to audit power generation companies that are unable to provide stable electricity.

“Generation companies that consistently fail to provide their committed power supply should be held accountable,” Senator Sherwin T. Gatchalian said in a statement. “They should not be allowed to get off the hook easily.”

This comes after a recent power interruption in the Negros and Panay islands sub-grid due to an unplanned outage of the Panay Energy Development Corp. Unit 3 on Jan. 17.

The Western Visayas region also experienced blackouts due to unplanned outages earlier this month.

Mr. Gatchalian had called for harsher penalties against power generation firms that are found to be liable of mismanaging power-related issues that result in economic losses.

Iloilo City Mayor Geronimo P. Treñas earlier told a Senate hearing looking into the Jan. 2 power interruptions that the city had lost about P500 a day or about P2 billion in the four days without power.

The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) has said it had followed ERC protocols when it respondend to the multiple plant shutdowns in Panay, adding it did not observe abnormalities in the power system.

Senators had urged the NGCP and the DoE to be more transparent and to accept accountability of the blackouts. — John Victor D. Ordoñez