3 power coops yet to operate gensets

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Monday, March 24, 2014


THREE electric cooperatives that have acquired modular generator sets (gensets) are unable to use the equipment due to the pending approval of rates by the Electric Regulatory Commission (ERC).

Romeo Montenegro, director of investment promotions and public affairs of the Mindanao Development Authority (Minda), said in Monday’s edition of Kapehan sa Dabaw at SM City Davao Annex that South Cotabato Electric Cooperative 1 and 2 (Socoteco 1 and Socoteco 2) and Davao del Sur Electric Cooperative (Dasureco) have already acquired their modular gensets by individual bidding but are not able to use them.

"Their gensets have already been installed, Socoteco 1 has 12 megawatts (MW), Socoteco 2 has 15 MW, and Dasureco has 15 MW. But they are not yet in operation since they are still awaiting for their approval from the ERC," he said.

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Montenegro said they have met with ERC and were told that the applications of three cooperatives have already been deliberated.

"They expect to come up with a ruling by next week so that these gensets can begin to operate," he said.

The Mindanao modular genset program was ordered by President Benigno Aquino III through Executive Order 137.

The program is established to provide the needed additional power supply of electricity in Mindanao. Under the EO, the amount of P4.5 billion, sourced from the Malampaya Fund, will be released for the program.

Montenegro said electric distributors may purchase or rent modular gensets depending on their financial capacity.

Last month, during Department of Energy's consultative dialogue at The Waterfront Insular Hotel, the agency reported that Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative, Davao Oriental Electric Cooperative, Misamis Oriental I Electric Cooperative acquired gensets through Association of Mindanao Rural Electric Cooperatives (Amreco) bidding.

DOE also reported that Zamboanga City Electric Cooperative, Surigao del Norte Electric Cooperative, Davao del Sur Electric Cooperativ acquired gensets through individual bidding.

The modular genset program is one of the steps undertaken by the government to provide sufficient supply to Mindanao consumers. The other programs are the Interruptible Load Program (ILP) and the Interim Electricity Market (Imem).

At present, Imem is being suspended at the wake of the recent Mindanao-wide blackout in February 27, 2014. The ILP on the other hand is already being implemented.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 25, 2014.

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