DOE readying possible raps vs power firms over Luzon brownouts
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Energy (DOE) has yet to identify which power generation companies (gencos) may be charged with economic sabotage over the recent brownouts in Luzon as it begins preparing documents for the cases.
During the House of Representatives hearing on the Luzon power interruption earlier this year Friday, ACT Teachers party-list Rep. France Castro asked the DOE which companies could face sabotage charges over the recent outages.
Director Mario Marasigan of DOE’s Electric Power Industry Management Bureau, said the agency is still gathering documents for the filing of the economic sabotage cases.
“Kaya po humingi kami ng tulong sa ating Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) and the DOJ (Department of Justice) is for us to look into sa nangyayaring situation natin [situation we are in],” Marasigan told House lawmakers.
“We are still in the process of collecting all the information and we have not yet identified which particular generating companies are to be subjected. So nasa [We are in the] process of document preparation po kami,” he added.
Energy Undersecretary William Fuentebella earlier said the DOE is also looking into the liability of National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP).
Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi had repeatedly criticized NGCP for being “consistently noncompliant” with the requirement to secure “firm” contracts for ancillary services that would provide on-call, backup supply whenever needed.
The ERC has already ordered the NGCP to explain the delay in 33 approved power transmission projects. The NGCP said it would cooperate with the ERC and provide all the needed information.
Luzon experienced rotational power interruptions due to thinning energy supply earlier this week, with the area even being placed under red alert for 13 hours on Wednesday.
Cusi, during the same hearing, said factors such as heat, a peak in power demand, and the shutdown of the four plants have contributed to the power outages.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.