By Armando Fenequito Jr.
DAVAO CITY — The Davao Light and Power Co., Inc. (Davao Light) has explained that the increase in the electricity bills of consumers here was because of higher energy usage during the summer months.
Davao Light Assistant Vice President for Reputation Enhancement Rossano Luga said, in a statement, they observed that the average consumption of residential customers increased significantly by 17 percent.
Luga said some customers’ bills have doubled compared to the pre-summer month like February versus April.
“In these summer months, customers tend to use more electricity due to the intense heat that we have been experiencing. The temperature has been recorded by PAGASA to climb as high as 41 degrees centigrade,” he said.
He said the use of cooling home appliances, such as air-conditioning, refrigerators, and electric fans, are usually extended for longer periods. The ambient temperature also made these appliances work harder in order to keep up with the cooling demand. Setting these appliances at low temperature also required more electricity.
Luga said, unlike before when most people worked in the office or in the field, most stayed at home to work during the community quarantine.
” Hence, there are more users of electricity in the house on a 24-hour basis,” he said.
He said contributing to the increase was the generation charge due to the shift from wet to dry rates of the distribution firm’s biggest supplier, the National Power Corporation (NPC-PSALM). This shift carries an increase of P0.33 per kilowatt-hour or from P2.59 to P2.92.
Luga said during dry rate periods, an increase in the use of more expensive energy sources takes place as major hydropower plants, which are cheaper, have low generation.
“This runs from January to June but is reflected in the customers’ bill’s generation charge from February to July,” he said.
He said the generation charge in the customer’s bill is just a pass-through charge or Davao Light merely acts as a collecting agent for this charge. Davao Light’s own rate, which is the distribution charge, has not increased since 2012.
He said the Davao Light has advised its customers to use electricity wisely through energy conservation and energy efficiency methods. They may visit www.davaolight.com for tips on how to reduce consumption.