Oil companies as well as power firms have been directed by the Department of Energy (DOE) to guarantee that services to Filipino consumers must be seamless during the government-enforced stricter two-week general community quarantine (GCQ) within the so-called National Capital Region (NCR) plus bubble.

Apart from Metro Manila, other neighboring areas of the capital placed under more stringent quarantine measures had been the provinces of Rizal, Laguna, Cavite and Bulacan – and this will be from March 22 to April 4 this year.

Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi

Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi mandated that energy services must not be impeded, primarily electricity since many employees will be locked in anew into work-from-home arrangements on the duration of the more rigid quarantine protocols; while students will be on their continued online distance learning.

Power supply will certainly be the most critical service that consumers need, because they will be confined in using their gadgets – like computers and phones – in delivering their tasks and commitments to their work.

Cusi thus instructed Energy Undersecretary Alexander S. Lopez, who is also the chairman of the DOE’s Task Force Energy Resiliency, to make certain that “energy services will be uninterrupted, not just within the NCR bubble but in the entire country.”

Oil is the other key commodity that the energy sector must continually supply in the market – as this will be indispensably needed by key industries, not just to underpin transport and economic activities, but will also support the mobility needs of frontliners who are leading the country’s fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Cusi, in particular, stated that “the delivery of basic goods and services should not be affected,” especially for those that will be coming in and out of Metro Manila and the provinces.

The power utilities of the country have already anticipated the shift of consumption in the residential segment, hence, they have been reinforcing their networks for the delivery of electricity services even prior to the more unyielding state of quarantine protocols in the country.

The general forecast is sustained lower power demand this year as the rate of Covid-19 infections are still escalating in several areas in the Philippines; but despite that, the power firms have already been bracing for highly probable spike in electricity usage because of scorching weather during the summer months.

Beyond these factors that are out to exert pressure on power services in the country, the energy department has also alerted the energy firms on added electricity demand they would need to factor in as the country continues with its vaccination program.

The next batches of vaccine deliveries will be next week and April, so as early as now, the DOE is already prepping the power companies on their contingency plans and possible back-up measures in case they would experience system glitches during the inoculation activities to be carried out in various parts of the country. (MMV)

Source: Manila Bulletin (https://mb.com.ph/2021/03/24/energy-firms-directed-to-ensure-unimpeded-services-during-ncr-bubble-gcq/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=energy-firms-directed-to-ensure-unimpeded-services-during-ncr-bubble-gcq)