Davao Light contracts 453 MW for summer months next year

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 30 Nov) – The Davao Light and Power Company (DLPC) has contracted some 453 MW for the summer months next year and assured power consumers of no power outages during this period.

Engr. Rodger S. Velasco, DLPC vice president for engineering, told a press conference on Wednesday that even as they project the demand for power within its franchise area to rise from 370 MW to 405 MW next year, it will not affect its franchise area because of the surplus of over 1,000 MW in the Mindanao grid.

Unlike in the previous years, he said supply will not be much of a concern with the entry of more baseload coal-fired power plants in the Mindanao grid.

The rise in power demand is due to the growing real estate industry such as the construction of condominium buildings and new malls around here that they see it necessary to have a spare of at least 50 MW that can be tapped if anything happens to generating power sources, Velasco said.

“As you can see, there are many constructions all around,” he added.

Also, citing the projection of Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), he said that the country will not suffer from drought as it did recently, so the hydropower sources, which supply half of Mindanao’s power demand, will not be affected so much.

DLPC’s franchise area covers Davao City, Brgy. Bincungan in Tagum City, and Carmen, Sto. Tomas and Braulio Dujali towns in Davao del Norte with some 350,000 consumers.

Based on DLPC’s data, one megawatt of electricity can supply power to 4,167 customers.

Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi is eyeing a review on the electricity market in Mindanao to address the huge excess in energy supply with new baseload coal plants entering the grid.

The Power Electricity Market Corporation (PEMC), the operator of Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) in Luzon, used to handle the Interim Mindanao Electricity Market (IMEM) before its suspension in February 2014 due to “system collapse in Mindanao” and the need to “resolve operational and commercial issues and concerns.”

Cusi said that the electricity market will provide a venue for all distribution utilities and electric cooperatives to buy power even if they are not covered by an existing power supply contracts, at a competitive price.

He said that the electricity market can ensure a stable power while at the same time foster a more competitive market that will bring in more investments to Mindanao. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)