Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Energy Sector’s Election Preparation Nears Completion
The Power Task Force Election (PTFE) 2016, led by the Department of Energy (DOE), is almost done with preparatory works to ensure that power supply is sufficient, stable, and reliable before, during, and after the conduct of national and local elections on 09 May.
“We are nearing completion of preparations to ensure the readiness of the systems and power stakeholders who have roles to play during the Election Day,” said Energy Secretary Zenaida Y. Monsada. She emphasized that the entire Energy Family is in close coordination to provide uninterrupted electricity services as we all desire for a clean and unquestionable holding of elections.
The PTFE met with power generators on April 25 (yesterday) to discuss their work plans and commitments for the critical election period (one week before and one week after), especially that the conduct of scheduled maintenance services of the power plants have been carried out earlier to ensure readiness during the critical period.
As reported in the meeting, all power generators will be running at full capacity during elections except for the 180 megawatts (MW) Kalayaan Unit 4 which extended its maintenance until 14 May 2016. In Mindanao, dispatch of water resource for hydropower plants is being managed to ensure that there will be higher production during the critical period.
In addition, the big load customers (e.g. mall owners) were also invited on the PTFE meeting to seek their support to the government’s call to observe energy efficiency and conservation measures, such as, setting their cooling system temperature at 25˚C, and providing necessary information from the DOE on efficient practices for their customers.
Last Thursday (April 21), the Task Force has conducted a simulation drill to check if all systems are working at the dedicated Task Force command centers around the country. Prior to that, the group also visited the satellite command centers to inspect the power grid facilities in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The turnout of the drill capacitated the technical staff and personnel on what needs to be secured and monitored daily while approaching the election period.
Moreover, the Interagency Task Force on Securing Energy Facilities, which was formed by the President, has started clearing the vegetations and structures along the Baloi transmission facilities for areas with cooperative claimants, as a preventive maintenance to ensure the integrity of the transmission system. This follows the issuance of cutting permits from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources Region-10, in which trees planted are intentionally where transmission towers are located and transmission lines are traversing.
Most importantly, the DOE is set to release efficiency measures and practices as part of the public’s contribution to reducing electricity consumption to avert any power surges that may cause line trippings or thinning of power reserves during critical periods.