Wednesday, January 14, 2015

DOE formulates dispatch system for backup power

By Iris C. Gonzales (The Philippine Star) | Updated January 14, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a circular promulgating the central scheduling and dispatch of energy and contracted reserves or back up power for the country’s trading floor of electricity.

In a statement, Energy Secretary Carlos Jericho Petilla said the DOE has approved and adopted the “protocol for the central scheduling and dispatch of energy and contracted reserves.”

The central scheduling intends to reflect the entire capacities in the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM), the electricity trading floor, including the reserve capacities contracted by the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP), so that these can be centrally scheduled for either energy or reserve.

PEMC, as the market operator, will be responsible for determining the energy and reserve schedules of all facilities in the WESM, according to the circular.

Under the protocol, all trading participants shall submit their generation and reserve offers consistent with the WESM timetable for the week-ahead and day-ahead market projections to provide a more accurate determination of reserve requirements.

This central schedule would provide the DOE better monitoring of all generation capacity in both energy and reserve and provide more preparations to the participants for the eventual operation of the WESM reserve market, the DOE said.

“PEMC (Philippine Electricity Market Corp.), as the market operator, NGCP (National Grid Corp. of the Philippines) as the system operator and all affected trading participants shall ensure compliance with this circular and the said protocol for the better achievement of this policy. PEMC shall continuously submit an assessment report to the DOE on its implementation of this protocol and the development of the WESM reserve market,” Petilla said.

The DOE said the central scheduling of energy and contracted reserves — which will provide a view of all generation capacity of the grid — will further prepare power players for full commercial operations of the reserve market.

At present, reserve capacities are managed by the NGCP for the secure and reliable operation of the grid.

These capacities used for the reserves of NGCP are netted out of the generation offers submitted to the WESM.

The proposed reserve market, which is in progress, will be integrated to the WESM to make the costs of electricity more competitive, and provide reliable pricing incentives for prospective providers of both energy and reserve. source

Power woes loom as plants go into maintenance

By Iris C. Gonzales (The Philippine Star) | Updated January 14, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Several power plants in Luzon will go on scheduled maintenance shutdown this year, with two plants closing down as early as this month, data submitted by generators to the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) showed.

From January to July this year, several power plants with a total capacity of 4,162.6 megawatts will go on scheduled shutdowns but the exact amount of power that will disappear from the grid will vary every month, depending on the specific schedule each month.

Unit 1 of GN Power’s Mariveles coal plant in Bataan, with a capacity of 302 MW has scheduled a January shutdown, while Quezon Power Philippines’ 456.6-MW coal plant will also go on maintenance shutdown starting Jan. 17.

In February, Unit 2 of the Mariveles coal plant, with a capacity of 302 MW, will also go on maintenance shutdown, according to a released schedule of plant outages.

From March 15 to April, the two units of the Ilijan natural gas power plant of Kepco Philippines in Batangas with a total capacity of 1,200 MW will also go on maintenance shutdown.

This will follow the scheduled maintenance shutdown of the Malampaya deep water gas to power project in the same period. The Malampaya gas field in offshore Palawan supplies natural gas to three power plants in Luzon – the 1,200-MW Ilijan plant, the 1,000-MW Sta. Rita and 500-MW San Lorenzo power plants, both owned by the Lopez group.

The Sta. Rita plant in Batangas will also go on scheduled shutdown also from March 21 to 25, affecting 257 MW in capacity.

The Masinloc Unit 1 and Unit 2 coal power plants in Pangasinan are expected to go on scheduled outages in May and July, respectively, while Pagbilao Unit 1 and Unit 2 in Quezon are also expected to shut down in June and July, respectively.

The Sta. Rita plant will go on another scheduled outage in July, this time affecting 251 MW.

Some of the country’s power plants have to go on maintenance shutdowns more often than expected as many of these plants are already old, some of which are more than 50 years old.

Because of the scheduled shutdowns, the country is facing a tight power supply situation this year especially in the summer months.

To address the issue, President Aquino has asked Congress for emergency powers to tap additional supply but Congress has yet to grant the request.

The primary option being eyed to address the problem is the so-called Interruptible Load Program (ILP) wherein large power users will use their own generating capacities to ease demand from the grid especially this summer when there is a projected power deficit of 700 MW. source