3 power companies ask ERC to approve emergency PSAs

By Lenie Lectura – May 6, 2019
from Business Mirror

THE Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), Millennium Energy Inc. (MEI) and Therma Mobile Inc. (TMO) are asking regulators to approve their applications for emergency power-supply agreements (PSAs) to avert rotational power outage.

An approval from the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) will help solve the current emergency situation, they said.

“It must be emphasized that the timely and immediate implementation of the 2019 PSA is of paramount importance in order to avert manual load dropping [MLD] or power interruptions and ensure that power is continuous and reliable during the critical period of the May elections up to June,” they said in their respective applications filed before the ERC dated April 17.

Based on a forecast by the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP), there would be low voltage issues during the critical period of the May elections up to June this year in the Luzon grid each time peak demand exceeds 11,200 megawatts (MW).

During this period, several NGCP-Meralco delivery-point substations will be affected, which could trigger MLD.

Meralco said this is not a supply adequacy issue, but an ancillary service problem caused mainly by an insufficient supply to load center. One of the identified remedial measures is to ensure that the embedded generators in the area, which includes the power plant, is operational, available and dispatched.

As such, Meralco will facilitate the dispatch of the plant by executing an emergency PSA with TMO for April 26, 2019, to April 2020, in order to mitigate low-voltage situations forecasted by NGCP.

This one-year term of PSA could be shortened upon execution of an ancillary procurement agreement between TMO and NGCP.

Meralco and TMO, meanwhile, executed an interim PSA for the purchase of 70 MW from MEI’s 100-MW gas-turbine plant in Navotas. The IPSA will run from April 26 to June 25, 2019.

The implementation of the IPSA and PSA is dependent on ERC’s approval.