Power Industry 101.2

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By Jonathan Llanes

The Maryknoller

Thursday, May 22, 2014


IN OUR three-day seminar on the Electric Power Industry Reform Act or EPIRA at the University of the Philippines in Diliman, Associate Professor Roswaldo Del Mundo stressed the need for the power distributors to band together and set a respectable price in electric charges.

Banding together will pave the way for aggregation on the generation, transmission and distribution. But first and foremost,what is aggregation?

In business and economics, aggregation may refer to the joining of multiple purchasers in a group purchasing organization to increase their buying power.

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In the case of Benguet Electric Cooperative and other power distributors, this may refer to a Community Choice Aggregation or the joining of geographically contiguous communities to bypass a conventional energy utility monopoly and seek a greener energy service.

Prof. Wali foresees the important role of Electric cooperatives in addressing crisis in energy that will ensure least cost and stable supply of electricity to consumers, at the same time empowering the power distributors as mandated by EPIRA.

He explains power distributors must be educated on the framework of the Epira law, which will empower them in crafting specific actions.

Under aggregation, power distributors can do joint actions on specific concerns on power generation, sub – transmission and distribution, despite being separate and independent entities, they can decide as one through aggregation acting as a big company.

Del Mundo cited the Central Luzon electric cooperative as an example of aggregated costing wherein they agreed to set their electricity cost to P3.70 per kilowatt-hour, which is much less compared to the around P5/KWH cost of electricity in Metro Manila.

Under aggregation, the Central Luzon Electric Cooperative will use part of its fund for the development of a 300 mega watt power generation project that will ensure additional power source.

He adds empowering power distribution can break the monopoly of big generators and transmission companies wanting to buy out other distributors to have a free hand in dictating the prices of electric power.

Well, I guess now is the time for power distributors to have a single stand against these oligarchic monopolizers of the electric power industry.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on May 23, 2014.

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