THE ENERGY department has released draft rules that will enforce a law that ensures the uninterrupted flow of electricity from generation plants to consumers.
Under the implementing rules, the Board of Electrical Engineering will determine the country’s power line corridor. The rules broadly cover all power lines and related facilities including transmission and sub-transmission lines, interties and associated facilities, either overhead, underground or submarine, in the main grids of Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
The rules will also apply to entities that own, operate and control the power lines and their associated facilities, franchise, contract, certificate and other similar documents.
Under Republic Act 11361, which President Rodrigo R. Duterte signed into law in August, a so-called “power line corridor” that includes the land beneath, the air space around, and the area traversed by power lines should be free of obstructions at all times.
The law prohibits planting tall plants within the power line corridor. Building hazardous improvements within the corridor is also prohibited.
The rules allow power line owners and operators to seek the help of local governments, the police and Armed Forces. Under the rules, the penalties on violators range from P50,000 to a P200,000 and prison sentences.
The Energy department has given stakeholders to submit their comments on the draft rules by Dec. 6. — Victor V. Saulon