The operation of three new power plants in the Visayas early this year is expected to stabilize the power situation in the region, Energy Undersecretary Jose Layug Jr. said yesterday.
Layug said the operation of the Cebu-Energy Development Corporation, Panay-EDC, and the Korean Electric Power Corporation-Salcon Power Corporation (KEPCO-Salcon) by March and by the second quarter of this year will provide an additional 500 megawatts power supply to the Visayas.
“With the three power plants coming on line by the next quarter, we expect the problem of power shortage to be addressed,” he said.
Layug cited, for example, that if a power plant is down, brownouts will be experienced. “If you have the three power plants on line, the power situation will stabilize,” he said.
On the issue of dependable capacity, Layug said the Visayas has about 1,300 MW of power.
Its peak demand had increased in May 2010 to over 1,300 MW, he said. But with the three new power plants coming online, Visayas will have sufficient power reserves, he added.
Meanwhile, Layug said that in the past few months, they saw that the spot prices of electricity is lower because of the wholesale electricity market and they expect the prices to continue decreasing because of WESM.
WESM for the Visayas was launched in Bacolod City on December 2010 and is expected to end brownouts in the area.
CENECO president Edward Gasambelo had earlier said WESM is expected to provide power-generation companies an assured platform where they can sell their electricity to distribution utilities and cooperatives at competitive prices.
According to the WESM website, it’s role in the country’s overall energy reform is to create a fair, transparent and reliable environment that will attract investments and encourage healthy competition leading to the ultimate objective of cheaper electricity for all consumers.*CGS