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Luzon grid on yellow alert anew

MANILA, Philippines - A yellow alert has been raised in the Luzon grid anew after a major power plant went on scheduled maintenance shutdown, which brought down operating reserves.

The National Grid Corp. of the Philippines said the yellow alert was from 10 a.m to 4 p.m. yesterday.

In a text message, Manila Electric Co. spokesman Joe Zaldarriaga said the 600 megawatt (MW) Block B of the Ilijan power plant went offline at around 12:44 a.m.

“The unit is expected to be unavailable until Aug. 28, 2016,” Zaldarriaga said.

Other plants on planned outage due to preventive maintenance are the 180 MW Unit 2 of the Kalayaan plant, 265 MW Unit 2 of Sta. Rita and the 55 MW Bacman geothermal plant.

Zaldarriaga said several plants also went on forced outage. These are Unit 4 of the Angat main hydropower plant, Unit 1 of Kalayaan, Units 1 and 10 of the Makban geothermal plant, Block 5 of the Limay cogeneration plant, Unit 2 of the Pagbilao coal-fired plant, Unit 1 of the South Luzon Thermal Energy Corp., Unit 1 of the Malaya thermal plant and Unit 2 of the Southwest Luzon Power Generation Corp.

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The yellow alert was extended until 8 p.m. after the San Gabriel plant went on outage, Meralco senior vice president and head of utility economics Larry Fernandez said in another text message.

Meanwhile, the Department of Energy said it is assessing the situation in the Luzon grid.

“We will work with the Energy Regulatory Commission to ensure that all standards are enforced to ascertain reliable, stable and reasonably priced electricity, because we cannot let the people suffer from power interruptions,” Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said in a statement issued yesterday.        

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