By Philippine News Agency
It would take three to seven days before power will be restored in Eastern Visayas, said Energy Undersecretary Felix William Fuentebella during the emergency meeting of the Regional Development Council Saturday afternoon.
Fuentebella attended the RDC meeting representing Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi who conducted inspection and assessment at the geothermal plants in the town of Kananga and Ormoc City following the 6.5 magnitude earthquake that hit Leyte on July 6.
“DOE (Department of Energy) and its family are working around the clock to restore power for the three million electricity subscribers in the Visayas,” Fuentebella said.
“But if we want to make the repair resilient we will have to work on that for 180 days,” Fuentebella said. He added that they were also looking at the deployment of three power barges now in Iloilo with a capacity of 20MW each to provide the needed power in the region.
According to him, there were also generator sets with a capacity of 1MW for the use of hospitals to continue their operations which the local government unit could borrow from the agency.
“A 1MW generator can provide power to a 12-storey building using full capacity of the equipment inside,” Fuentebella explained to RDC members.
The DOE official also stressed that in the power restoration conducted by the agency, government offices and commercial establishment were the priority to continue the delivery of government services and not to hamper the economic activity.
“Good thing that all 11 electric cooperatives in the region are ready and prepared to receive power supply from the NGCP (National Grid Corporation of the Philippines),” Fuentebella added citing the report of electric cooperatives at the RDC meeting.
Energy Development Corporation (EDC) vice president James Arnold Villaroman said at the RDC meeting that the power plants that suffered damages from the earthquake were the Tongonan Geothermal Power Plant 1 and Malitbog Unit 3 that has damage in its cooling tower.
Repair for the TGPP 2 (35MW) may be within seven to 10 days while Upper Mahiao plant (132MW) will be five to seven days.
The Malitbog 1 & 2 plants (150 MW) will be repaired from five to 10 days while they had not reached the Mahanagdong plant to assess the damage.
“Our contractors are working double time to restore power and we are targeting around 300MW of electricity to supply in Eastern Visayas in the next three to seven days,” Villaroman said.
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