By Myrna M. Velasco
The country’s power generation companies (GenCos) had been directed to submit their three-year power plant outage schedules to prevent a precarious scenario of rotating brownouts especially during summer months.
This is a requirement set forth by the Department of Energy (DOE) under the revised Grid Operating and Maintenance Program (GOMP) to be administered by system operator National Grid Corporation of the Philippines.
In the modified GOMP, it has been prescribed that “all generating companies shall submit three-year planned outage schedules for their power plants to the NGCP for the Grid Operating Program.”
The Philippine Grid Code (PGC) in particular stipulates that the GenCos must provide “the transmission network provider (in this case NGCP) by week 27 of the current year a provisional maintenance program for the three succeeding years” – and this is what the DOE wants to be strictly enforced from now on.
From the power plant outage schedules submitted by the GenCos, NGCP has been instructed to “devise a mechanism to come up with an optimal generation and transmission planned outage schedule which shall be the basis of the GOMP.”
And as further ordered by the energy department, NGCP shall submit to it the GOMP “every third quarter of the year for review and approval.”
The energy department said it shall then review the proposed outage schedules based on the power system’s reserve profile, and will “direct the necessary adjustments in the generation and transmission planned outage schedules.”
The DOE added “NGCP and the concerned generating companies shall be informed accordingly of any changes in the submitted GOMP,” while emphasizing that “the first year of the GOMP schedule shall be considered binding and can be changed during its implementation, subject to DOE approval.”
For the second and third years of the submitted outage schedules, the DOE noted that such shall be considered “indicative and reference for medium-term power supply and demand outlook.”
The DOE further qualified it is pursuing modifications in the GOMP following this year’s “series of red and yellow alert notices of the system operator in the Luzon grid starting the summer period of 2019 wherein the grid had low reserve level due to substantial capacity on forced outages and deratings that led to occurrence of rotating power interruptions in Metro Manila and some areas in Luzon.”