Luzon grid woes not affecting power supply in NegOcc

THOUGH Luzon and Visayas grids are interconnected, problems currently hounding the former are not affecting power supply in Negros Occidental, an official of a local electric cooperative said.

For several consecutive days already, starting June 1, the Luzon grid has been placed under yellow alert by the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP).

This is due to the unexpected shutdown and limited generation of some power plants as well as high power demand, an advisory from the transmission utility said.

Engineer Leomel Tambanillo, corporate planning division manager of the Central Negros Electric Cooperative (Ceneco), told SunStar Bacolod on Sunday, June 3, that there is currently sufficient power supply in the Visayas grid.

Tambanillo said the interconnection between Luzon and Visayas grids via Leyte submarine cable allows the latter to supply power to the other grid whenever augmentation is needed.

“When you talk about reliability, Visayas’ energy reserve is more stable right now than Luzon,” he said, adding that in fact, it is currently exporting power to Luzon.

Ceneco caters to the largest number of electric consumers in Negros Occidental, covering cities of Bacolod, Bago, Talisay and Silay, and towns of Murcia and Salvador Benedicto.

The two other electric cooperatives catering to the remaining localities in the province are Northern Negros Electric Cooperative (Noneco) and Negros Occidental Electric Cooperative (Noceco).

In terms of price, like any other power distribution utilities in the Visayas, the alert level raised over Luzon grid may, on the other hand, indirectly affect the three cooperatives in the province.

Tambanillo explained that increase in alert level may result in upward movement on power prices of Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM).

“Prices in the Visayas are still influenced somehow by Luzon WESM prices, yet it is not that significant,” he added.

Moreover, a yellow alert, the second highest alert level, is raised when reserve power is below the required level or if a grid has thin reserves based on the difference between supply and demand.

If ever the situation in Luzon grid worsens, or if raised to red alert, it will not necessarily affect power supply in the Visayas.

Tambanillo said the electricity goes first to those with load, thus, the grid will satisfy first the need of the nearest ones.

“So there is nothing to worry because we are not affected by the problems in Luzon grid. No direct impact on the supply, only indirect effect on prices but minimal,” he stressed.

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