NPC restores power supply in South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat to full capacity ahead of Monday’s polls

May 9, 2010 11:38 am 

KORONADAL CITY, May 9 – The National Power Corporation (NPC) has restored the power supplies here and other parts of South Cotabato and Sultan Kudarat provinces to full capacity during the last two days in preparation for Monday’s automated national and local elections.

Engr. Santiago Tudio, South Cotabato Electric Cooperative (Socoteco)-I general manager, said this morning they temporarily shelved the daily rotational brownouts last Friday afternoon after the NPC and power transmission firm National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) raised the area’s power load to 27.8 megawatts (MW).

He said the restoration of the area’s regular power supply came at least two days ahead of the promised three-day zero-brownouts starting May 9 declared earlier by the NPC in connection with the scheduled elections.

“We’re operating on full capacity since late Friday and this will continue until May 11 according to the NPC’s advisory,” he said.

Tudio said the NPC and NGCP also increased the power load of other electric cooperatives in Mindanao to ensure that no power outages would happen during the election day and the succeeding canvassing of votes.

In an earlier advisory, he said NPC officials cited that the firm decided to operate its existing hdyroelectric plants in Lake Lanao and Agus River as well as in Pulangi River to full capacity to offset the 700-MW power shortage of the critical Mindanao power grid.

He said the NPC explained that it would release a substantial amount of water from the dams controlling the three major water resources to allow its generating plants to operate on full stream.

Tudio said the power generating firm is also counting on the voluntary de-loading from the Mindanao grid of major power users such as shopping malls and industrial companies from May 9 to 11.

In its service area in South Cotabato, he said at least three shopping malls and one major industrial company have signified to implement either a full or partial de-loading scheme during the period.

But Tudio said the implementation of the voluntary de-loading by the major power users would depend on the changes in the area’s power demand.

“We’re appealing to our consumers, especially owners of rice mills, to be prudent in their power usage during the peak hours or from 7:30 to 9 p.m. to avoid possible power breakdowns,” he said.

The NGCP earlier reduced the area’s power requirements by at least 50 percent as part of its load continuing shedding scheme for power distribution utilities in the entire Mindanao grid.

The NGCP had blamed the power cuts to the drastic decline of the generating capacities of the National Power Corporation’s hydroelectric plants due to the El Niño-triggered reduction of the water levels in Lake Lanao and the Agus and Pulangi river systems.

Socoteco I, which operates in the South Cotabato area and portions of Sultan Kudarat province, implemented rotational brownouts of six to seven hours a day as a result of the power cuts. (PNA)

FFC/AVE

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