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Jul 30 2013

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Electricity in the Philippines

Albay is yet again facing total power disconnection if the local Albay Electric Cooperative (ALECO) fails to settle its outstanding electricity bill to the Philippine Electricity Market Corp. (PEMC).

At 12 noon, 30th July 2013, the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines cut off power supply to the Albay Electric Cooperative because of nearly P1 billion in unpaid debt to the Philippine Electricity Market Corporation (PEMC).

As at June 18, 2013, ALECO had an outstanding arrears of P19.9 million, with a further P99.6 million, that would be due on June 25, 2013.

Current news states that Aleco owes a total of almost P4 billion to all the power producers and suppliers (National Power Corporation, PEMC, Wholesale Electricity Spot Market and the NEA).

In 2011, it was stated that the State-run Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) was owed P27 billion by 90 electric cooperatives around the country. That is an average of P300 million for each electric cooperative.

In 2010 the Albay Governor, Joey Salceda made this statement:

For 35 years, Albay province provided Luzon with the cheapest and cleanest energy, yet Albayanos have no substantial benefits. We serve the country, but what the Albay province got is only a P14-million royalty for four years and Aleco is paying back WESM [Wholesale Electricity Spot Market] of P2.1 billion this is completely unjust.

On face value, it seems that Albay isn’t being given sufficient credit for its own inputs.

The Albay, Tiwi Geothermal Power Plant, has a production of 275Mw.
Luzon uses about 7,000MW per hour according to www.wesm.ph, so this single Albay power plant provides 4% of all of Luzon power, and with its population of 1,233,432 (www.nscb.gov.ph) being 2.5% of the Luzon population based on the figure of  48,520,774, it could maybe get close to becoming self sufficient in power.

Albay Gov. Joey Salceda has declared it is the Department of Energy (DOE) that owes Albay P102 billion, which the latter contributed to the country’s development over 34 years from out of its indigenous geothermal energy, and that the power sourced from Tiwi, Albay, accounts for 11% of the power flowing through the entire Luzon grid.

Electricity has been generated using geothermal power in the towns near Mayon since 1967, and the Philippines has grown to now be the second largest producer of geothermal power in the world.

Electricity rates:

Sept 2010: A figure of P19.19 a kilowatt electricity rate was quoted with Albay having the lowest power rate in Bicol at just P16.50 a kilowatt an hour.

June 2013: Meralco, stated that the the generation charge was now P5.66 per kwh.

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