Analysis: Philippines has enough energy supply
by EA Abasquez
San Jose, Antique (12 October) -- The Philippines has enough energy supply and the public is assured that this will be maintained in the coming years.
The Office of Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla disclosed that the periodic assessment of future energy requirements is a permanent task of the government. The energy team is closely working with all industry sectors and stakeholders in this regard.
This challenge is being worked on 24 by 7 and all steps are being taken to prevent and preempt potential problems.
The government is also exploring various alternative sources of energy to reinforce the whole system. The public is assured that no one will be groping in the dark in the coming years.
In the province, the Antique Electric Cooperative (ANTECO) has adequate energy supply through interconnections with Palinpinon in Negros Oriental, Cebu and Leyte power plants, bared Eng'r. Gregorio Rufino, chief of Institutional Services Department.
However if problems occur in power plants, or along the transmission lines, consequently ANTECO encounters deficieny, resulting to rotating power interruptions and load shedding, Rufino explained.
The Electric Cooperative has a peak demand of 12 megawatts which is sufficiently provided for the total connections of 47,791 composed of households and commercial establishments.
Meanwhile, the ANTECO pursues the Electrification of Barangay Program under the Ten Point Agenda of President Gloria Arroyo. The rural electric cooperative has covered remote barangays, through various funding sources/schemes.
The electric coverage has reached Caluya and Semirara Island, through the National Power Corporation's (NPC) Small Power Utility Group (SPUG).
Under this scheme, Rufino explained Caluya main land uses generator, with lighting facility at specific period of about 12 hours. In Semirara island, ANTECO buys excess power of Semirara Coal Corporation at lower rate, to supply consumer-members in the island.
Furthermore, the ANTECO official explained that preparations are underway for the cooperative to access power supply through the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) as provided in the EPIRA law or the Electricity Power Industry Reform Act, RA No. 9136.
Computers and internet connections are being upgraded to facilitate purchase of power supply through the spot market or the internet.
WESM makes the cost of power cheaper, allows competition among suppliers/producers, and the purchase is done through a bidding process, Rufino pointed out..
On the need to have Panay-based power plant, the ANTECO official averred that Korean investors had visited the province in the past months on how to develop the proposed Villiaciga Hydro Electric project in Antique. (PIA) [top]