by Lenie Lectura – January 10, 2016
from Business Mirror
THE Department of Energy (DOE) has created a task force to ensure adequate and reliable supply of electricity before and after the May 9 elections.
DOE Department Circular DC2016-01-0001 outlines specific duties and responsibilities of concerned national government agencies and power stakeholders, such as ensuring availability and operation of power plants and electricity market; carrying out strategic preventive maintenance of all power facilities; and providing enough technical manpower for emergency response and security of vital power infrastructures, among others.
The Power Task Force Election 2016 shall be composed of a core group and supporting organizations.
The core group team will be headed by the energy secretary, while the members are the president of the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP), administrator of the National Electrification Administration (NEA) and presidents of the National Power Corp. (Napocor), the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM), National Transmission Corp. (Transco), Philippine Electricity Market Corp. (PEMC) and Manila Electric Co. (Meralco).
PSALM and Napocor are tasked to ensure availability of generating units, including those already privatized, to meet demand and required reserves, in close coordination with the NGCP.
They are also required to ensure maximum reservoir level for hydro power plants prior to election day. Further, they are responsible for suspending preventive maintenance and testing of generating units one week before and after election day.
Transco and NGCP are also tasked to ensure availability of all substation facilities and emergency-diesel generators. NEA, on the other hand, shall oversee the preparations of all electric cooperatives and ensure the readiness and reliability of the distribution systems.
PEMC must ensure the continuous operation of the spot market.
The members of the supporting organizations, meanwhile, include the Philippine Independent Power Producers Association, Philippine Rural Electric Cooperatives Association, Private Electric Power Operators Association Inc., Retail Electricity Suppliers Association, Philippine Federation of Electric Cooperatives and other associations of distribution utilities.
Energy Secretary Zenaida Y. Monsada shall head the task force. The members, meanwhile, are tasked to ensure operation of their respective facilities, institute mitigating measures, report the status of their facilities, address potential problems.
They shall also establish their respective contingency teams and designate their representatives to support the sub-Task Force Election 2016.
“As part of its mandate and in accordance to Comelec Resolution 10023, the DOE deems it necessary to adopt measures to ensure provision of stable and continuous supply of power during the national and local elections starting from May 2, 2016, until the termination or conclusion of the canvassing of votes and the proclamation of winning candidates,” the circular said.
The Election Power Task Force’s Command Centers within NGCP Compounds in Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao will be in Diliman, Quezon City; Banilad, Cebu City; and Cagayan de Oro City.