Meralco eyes add’l power supply

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    New baseload. Competitive bidding of power supply should help lower the price of electricity in Meralco’s franchise area.
    New baseload. Competitive bidding of power supply should help lower the price of electricity in Meralco’s franchise area.

    After securing a total of 1,700 megawatts (MW) of power via competitive selection process (CSP), Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) eyes a new batch of CSP for another 1,500 MW worth of electricity supply.

    “… We need additional baseload and hopefully new plants. We…also have to ensure that new plants are built to replace the old aging plants, because the old aging plants, those are the plants that go down more frequently and that affects basically the stability of power within the franchise area,” said Ray Espinosa, Meralco president and chief executive officer.

    In deciding whether or not the 1,500 MW will be bidded out in one go, Espinosa said there is a conscious effort on the part of Meralco to “make sure there’s a good mix of brownfield and greenfield” power plants in its supply portfolio.

    Espinosa said Meralco will consider all comments of power generation developers regarding their terms of reference (TOR) for greenfield power plants in their calls for CSP.

    One is if Meralco will allow circulating fluidized bed coal plants to join the bid.

    At present, Meralco only qualifies high efficiency low emission coal plants.

    “We are studying how we can adjust it but of course we want all players to join. We only have considerations why the TOR is very stringent for the greenfield. No date yet but we’re actually looking at everything but it will be definitely this year,” Espinosa said.

    In the first batch of CSP, the company secured 1,200 MW for the supply of electricity effective Dec. 26, 2019 for a term of 10 years to three power generators.

    Meralco also bidded 500 MW for the supply of electricity effective Dec. 26, 2019 for a term of five years to three power generators.