The power distributor, Manila Electric Railroad and Light Company (MERALCO), announced yesterday that their customers would have to shoulder higher electricity rates for this month.
Compared from the previous month of having P5.33 per kilowatt-hour, MERALCO’s generation charge will be P5.66, an increase of 33 centavos per kilowatt-hour for the billing month of April.
“Charges from WESM, which contributed seven percent to MERALCO’s power requirements, were higher by P2.46 per kwh compared to the level in the previous month,” the power distributor said.
“The output of hydroelectric plants declined last month, prompting the grid to rely on more expensive oil-based power plants to meet power requirements,” MERALCO added.
A data from MERALCO showed that there was a peak demand for the Luzon grid and rose by more than 300 megawatts (MW) at the beginning of summer.
MERALCO uttered that temporarily the power generation charge of IPPs went up by 24 centavos per kilowatt-hour after a mechanical difficulty that limits the utilization of the 460 megawatts (MW) Quezon Power coal plant.
IPPs interpreted a 44% of MERALCO’s power requirements for the supply month of March.
The price increase wasn’t able to offset due to the nine-centavo per kilowatt-hour decline in the generation charge of National power Corporation, which accounted for 49% of the total supply.
The electricity bill’s biggest component, which is the generation charge, accounts for 56% of the customer’s average monthly power bill. This charge goes directly to MERALCO’s power suppliers.
MERALCO said that the cost of power traded by generating companies could change monthly, based on several external factors such as the supply-demand situation, foreign exchange rate and furl prices.
The consumers need to be efficient in using energy among traditionally higher consumption during the summer season.
Power usage typically rise in dry seasons as appliances work doubly hard in this conditions and more household members are just staying indoor during the summer period.