Cebu News

Respite to consumers: Visayan Electric reduces power rate

Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon - The Freeman
Respite to consumers: Visayan Electric reduces power rate
This photo shows Meralco electric technicians fixing a power line.
Photo Release

CEBU, Philippines — Good news to all residential consumers of Visayan Electric (VECO), as they will experience a P0.10 per kilowatt-hour decrease in their April to May billing.

“The rate reduction brings the total electricity rate from P11.38 per kilowatt-hour of the previous month to P11.28 per kilowatt-hour this month,” VECO said, in a statement.

It said that the rate reduction is caused by the decrease in generation and transmission charges imposed by power generators and the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP).

VECO said that households utilizing at least 200 kWh of electricity monthly can anticipate potential savings of up to P20.00 on their upcoming bill.

Despite the good news, however, VECO warned consumers to not be complacent, as the extreme heat currently being experienced may escalate electricity consumption.

Engr. Raul Lucero, VECO president and chief operating officer, said that even with the decrease in electricity rate, customers should still prioritize energy conservation.

“During times of extreme heat, like what we're experiencing now, our energy consumption tends to spike, which could also cause our bill to increase significantly,” Lucero said.

Cebu and its neighboring provinces have been experiencing lately heat indexes as high as 38°C. This often leaves people with no choice but to turn on their cooling appliances for longer periods.

Also, with the recent low power reserve concerns declared by NGCP in the Visayas Grid, conserving electricity can really help prevent rotational brownouts, should there be a power shortage.

With this, VECO recommends the following tips to conserve electricity and to avoid a ballooning electric bill:

First is unplug appliances that are not being used. Keeping appliances plugged in even when they are not in use still uses power, even if just a small one.

“In times when energy saving is crucial, every watt counts so unplug those appliances when not in use,” VECO said.

Second is turn off lights that are not needed. During daytime, minimize or avoid the use of lights inside the house to save on electricity. Aside from increasing your power usage, these lights also generate heat, which contributes to the already hot and humid weather.

“Open curtains or use light colored drapes to let natural light come inside rooms,” VECO said.

Third, check your air-conditioning (AC) unit. When using air-conditioners, make sure that you are using the right AC for the room size. An AC with a low horsepower (hp) in a big room, will have to work double time to make the room cool.

“Set the thermostat to an ideal level. The lesser the difference between the outdoor temperature from the indoor temperature, the lower the energy consumed by the AC. It is also best to use your AC’s timer,” VECO likewise said.

Fourth, use your electric fans wisely. When using electric fans, make sure that the appliance is properly maintained and cleaned. Place the electric fan near a door or window for proper air circulation and to improve the fan’s cooling effect. Lock the oscillator when the fan is needed in one direction only. This way, air is blown directly to where it is needed;

Fifth, use your refrigerator correctly. Place your refrigerator in the coolest side of the room. The best location is usually in the northern part of the area, away from the morning and afternoon sun. Regularly defrost your refrigerator.

“Frost acts as an insulating blanket, causing the motor to work overtime. Remove store wrappings from foods before putting them in the refrigerator. Paper and similar materials can act as insulators,” VECO advised.

Sixth, in times when electricity demand is very high, customers should do their part in helping conserve energy even in their own little ways.

VECO is the second largest electricity distribution utility in the Philippines. It serves the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Talisay, and Naga and the municipalities of Liloan, Consolacion, Minglanilla, and San Fernando.

Meanwhile, NGCP reported that the Visayas grid status as of yesterday, April 17, was a yellow alert at 1 p.m. to 10 p.m.

A yellow alert is issued when the operating margin is insufficient to meet the transmission grid’s contingency requirement. This means while there is still enough power, the excess margin has drastically reduced.

NGCP said that 13 power plants are on forced outage while five others are running on derated capacities. — /RHM (FREEMAN)

vuukle comment


  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with