Benitez asks ERC to address high electricity rates

All three electric cooperatives in Negros Occidental attribute the power rate increases for April 2022 to the hike in fuel prices. Their respective consumers may expect about P0.50 per kilowatt hour hike. (Contributed Photo)
All three electric cooperatives in Negros Occidental attribute the power rate increases for April 2022 to the hike in fuel prices. Their respective consumers may expect about P0.50 per kilowatt hour hike. (Contributed Photo)

Bacolod City Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez has asked the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) to do their job in addressing high power rates to give Bacolodnons relief from the rising electricity costs.

In his letter addressed to Monalisa Dimalanata, chairperson and chief executive officer of ERC, dated May 27, Benitez informed her about the strong clamor of consumers in Bacolod City regarding the high power rates of Central Negros Electric Cooperative, Inc. (Ceneco) in recent months.

“After thorough dialogue with Ceneco officials on the said issue, it is my understanding that one of the major reasons attributed to the increase in power rates is the inaction of ERC on the joint petition filed by Ceneco and Energy Development Corporation (EDC) on March 15, 2024, under ERC Case No. 2024-038 RC,” Benitez said.

The ERC Case No. 2024-038 RC contained the matter of the application for the approval of the power supply agreement between Ceneco and EDC, with a motion for confidential treatment of information and prayers for provisional authority or interim relief.

Given that more than 60 days have passed since the filing of the petition, it clearly shows that the ERC has not acted on it, merely resulting in an intolerable increase in our power rates, he said, adding, “Considering the extreme urgency of the situation, we beg the indulgence of the ERC to favorably act on the said joint petition expeditiously,” Benitez said.

He said the ERC has temporarily suspended the operation of the wholesale electricity spot market (WESM) under the declaration of red alert by the systems operator, the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP).

“And that, we can expect for power prices to lower down as the rate freeze is implemented, however, the same has not been implemented in the recent month since the suspension,” he added.

The mayor disclosed that this move by ERC to suspend WESM is very timely and imperative now to provide relief to the suffering consumers in Bacolod City due to exorbitant electricity bills as of the moment.*

Trending

No stories found.

Just in

No stories found.

Branded Content

No stories found.
SunStar Publishing Inc.
www.sunstar.com.ph