Meralco customers to see higher electricity bills in July

by Alena Mae S. Flores – July 05, 2016 at 11:50 pm

from Manila Standard Today

Manila Electric Co. said Tuesday power rates will increase by an average of P0.29 per kilowatt-hour this month, because of plant outages in June that led to higher generation cost.

Meralco said the higher rates in July followed two consecutive reductions in May and June totaling P0.54 per kWh.

Meralco said a typical household consuming 200 kWh a month would experience an increase of around P58 in their electricity bill in July.

The power retailer said the increase in electricity rates was led by higher generation charges, which increased by P0.34 per kWh to P4.06 per kWh from last month’s level of P3.72 per kWh.

It said power cost at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market, the country’s trading floor of electricity, increased to P4.49 per kWh from P3.97 per kWh last month.

Meralco said this was caused by tight power supply compounded by the outage of several power plants during the June supply month.

Meralco noted five instances of ‘yellow alerts’ in June, specifically on June 13, 14, 17, 21 and 22.

Several power plants were shut down in June due to scheduled and unscheduled outages. Those plants included Pagbilao-2, San Lorenzo Mod 50 and 60, Sta. Rita Mod 40 and iPower.

Power plants that went on forced outage included Sual-1, San Gabriel, Calaca 1 and 2, GN Power1 and 2, Limay A and B, Sta. Rita Mod 10 and 30, SLPGC 1, SLTEC 1 and 2, San Roque 2, Pagbilao 1 and Ambuklao 2.

Meralco said that in contrast, the Luzon Grid did not experience any yellow or red alert in May, when peak demand reached a record9,727 MW.

“Due to the increased incidence of plant outages, too, Malaya 2 was dispatched for around half of the June supply month, when peak demand in Luzon dropped to 9,260 MW,” Meralco said.

The Malaya diesel plant owned by the government through the Power Sector and Liabilities Management Corp. are considered “must-run units” and are typically instructed by system operator National Grid Corporation of the Philippines to be dispatched when reserve levels in the grid are very low.

Meralco said costs of energy sourced from independent power producers also registered a slight increase of P0.03 per kWh, mainly due to the lower dispatch of Quezon Power Philippines Ltd.

Cost of power from plants under the power supply agreements with Meralco decreased by P0.02 per kWh on higher dispatch of the Ilijan natural gas plant.

Meralco sourced bulk of its power supply requirements in June from PSAs at 49.2 percent, followed by IPPs at 42 percent and WESM at 7.8 percent.

Transmission charges also declined by P0.08 per kWh, on lower ancillary charges. Taxes and other charges increased by P0.01 and P0.02 per kWh, respectively, following the increase in generation charges.