Monday, February 13, 2017
Cusi: DOE Overseeing Earthquake Power Rehab Efforts, Fuel Price Freeze
In the light of the magnitude 6.7 earthquake that hit Surigao province on Friday, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi today joined President Rodrigo Duterte and other cabinet members in extending the necessary assistance to all affected communities and individuals.
“We are looking into the extent of the damages caused by the earthquake. We are addressing the immediate needs and concerns of our people on energy," said Secretary Cusi, who stressed "safety is the top priority."
"We have to ensure an adequate, reliable and secure supply of energy and to execute fair pricing of petroleum products, such as gasoline, diesel, kerosene and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG),” added Cusi.
Cusi said his department is closely monitoring the power restoration efforts being conducted by the Surigao del Norte Electric Cooperative, Inc. (SURNECO).
According to a National Electrification Administration’s report, 95% of SURNECO’s franchise area has been restored by11:00 p.m. last night.
The effort has so far energized the primary lines of Surigao City and all the municipalities of the province while the remaining 5% is still being addressed by the electric cooperative.
SURNECO also reported the damage on its main office building, necessitating the transfer to their old building and covered court.
Earlier, the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines reported that there is no earthquake-related damage or sustained fault on transmission facilities.
For the petroleum and oil products, the DOE has reiterated the implementation of Republic Act (RA) 10623 which imposes a "price freeze" on certain LPG and kerosene products being sold in the areas affected by the calamity.
“With the declaration of a State of Calamity, government will impose a price freeze on basic energy commodities for 15 days, particularly for kerosene and household LPG," said Cusi.
“In order to effectively ensure the supply of petroleum products, oil companies are obliged to update the DOE of the operational status of their depots and gasoline stations within the areas to stabilize the supply and reduce chances of individuals who are taking advantage of the oil situation,” he added.
“The DOE assures everyone that it will remain to be vigilant in protecting the interest of the public, " Sec Cusi concluded.