ERC starts public hearings on Meralco PSAs

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The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has started conducting public hearings on the six power supply agreements (PSAs) of the Manila Electric Company which went through competitive selection process (CSP).

These PSAs are First Gen Hydro Power Corp., Phinma Energy Corp. and South Premiere Power Corp. for the 500 MW mid-merit capacity for five years to start on December 26. Adding to that are the Phinma Energy, SPPC and San Miguel Energy Corp. for the supply of 1,200 MW brownfield capacity, according to a Business Mirror report.

Climate justice and consumers’ rights groups raised their concerns during the public hearing on Monday.

The Power for People Coalition (P4P) filed a petition for intervention at the ERC and questioned the results of the competitive bidding.

“We are pleased that after over two years of Meralco’s insistent efforts to evade biddings for their power-supply agreements, the CSP finally took place,” Convenor of the Power for People Coalition Gerry Arances was quoted in a Business Mirror report.

“We find it alarming, however, that Meralco is still so set on ensuring that power consumers remain tied to paying for dirty energy in the coming decade while also suffering the impacts of destructive power generation,” Arances added.

At least 1,460 MW out of the six PSAs waiting for ERC’s approval process would be sourced from coal and other fossil fuels, P4P noted.

“Meralco is rushing the approval of these new PSAs because its existing contracts worth 1,905 MW, most of which come from coal-fired power plants, are expiring by the end of this month. But before consumers and all groups pushing for clean energy can rejoice [over] the end of these coal contracts’ reign, we learn that Meralco is replacing dirty energy, also with dirty energy,” Arances noted.

Masinloc coal-fired power plant (430 MW), Therma Luzon coal plant (350 MW), and a coal facility of SMEC (430 MW) contracts are set to expire before the year ends.

 

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