THE NATIONAL GRID Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) is bracing for power demand to hit a record high in this year’s dry season, prompting the privately owned grid system operator to call on consumers to use energy efficiently.
“Peak power periods in Luzon are expected within the months of April and May, with the rising temperatures prompting a spike in demand,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday.
NGCP said it was “gearing up” for the coming dry season as the Department of Energy (DoE) expects electricity demand in Luzon to reach 11,403 megawatts (MW), nearly five percent more than the previous year’s peak.
Last year, actual peak demand registered in Luzon was 10,876 MW, which was recorded on May 28.
“The demand for power has been increasing year-on-year. With the DoE’s forecast breaching 11,000 MW, NGCP’s system operations is working round-the-clock to ensure the sufficient supply of power during the critical summer months,” the company said.
“Constant coordination is also being done with power generating plants to make sure that maintenance shutdowns will not coincide with the peak periods within the summer.”
NGCP also called on consumers in the Visayas and Mindanao to use power efficiently in the summer months when it expects power supply to be lean. “Visayas and Mindanao have also reached new highs in terms of peak demand in 2018,” it said.
Last year, demand in the Visayas grid peaked at 2,053 MW on May 24, while demand in the Mindanao grid reached 1,853 MW on Dec. 13.
For 2019, the DoE expects almost a 12% increase in demand in Visayas load growth with a projected peak of 2,299 MW.
In Mindanao, demand is projected to hit 2,130 MW, or higher by almost 15%.
The peak periods in both areas are expected in the final quarter of the year.
“We all can positively contribute to energy efficiency, even at the individual or household level. The simple practices we do to save electricity consumption will go a long way. Cleaning the fan blades of our electric fans, aircon filters and dust in lightbulbs will help our appliances function more efficiently,” NGCP said.
“Unplugging appliances when not in use and scheduling the use of electricity-heavy appliances, such as irons and washing machines, to off-peak periods (before 11 a.m. and after 7 p.m.) will help a lot in saving electricity consumption, ensuring better power flow within the grid,” it added.
The company also assured industry stakeholders that it was continuously developing the power grid to accommodate additional loads from power generation companies and enable better transmission of power across the country.
“We are expediting the completion of projects aimed to accommodate this increase in demand. NGCP appeals for the support and cooperation of local government units and the public as we hope to complete these projects at the soonest possible time to prevent any negative impact on power supply during the dry season ahead,” the company said. — VVS