THE chairman of the House committee on energy has sought the passage of an Energy Efficiency & Conservation Bill to improve government’s baseline information on energy consumption levels for large energy consuming entities, and modernize the country’s electric grid infrastructure through a smart grid.
Speaking Friday at an energy forum organized by the Stratbase Albert Del Rosario lnstitute (ADRI) held at the Oakwood Premier in Ortigas Center in Pasig City, Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Jay Velasco, the panel chairman, explained that the Smart Grid is a key towards achieving greater grid reliability, and cost savings for customers in the long term.
Through smart grid, utilities will be able to deliver power more consistently and can prevent overloads and outages as well as real-time troubleshooting allowing problems to get fixed faster.
Velasco made his case amid a recurring theme of rolling blackouts in the country, particularly in Luzon Island, over the past weeks.
He said the rolling blackouts were experienced in Visayas in 2010, Mindanao in the past few years, and now in Luzon.
The lawmaker said the lack of power supply, or thinning power reserves for the past weeks, have been, in large part, due to the forced outages of various generating plants in Luzon.
The recent spate of Yellow Alert Status declarations by the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) prompted the Department of Energy (DoE) to assess whether there are enough measures or standards for power generation companies to ensure that their power plants are always in good condition, and are able to meet their obligations to their respective customers.
Set realistic and achievable energy reduction targets
Currently, there are five House Bill (HB) Nos. 182, 812, 970, 1220 and 1527 which are all related to energy efficiency and conservation that have been submitted for consideration with the House committee on energy.
Velasco said a smart grid has become an urgent matter to modernize the electric grid infrastructure by formulating policies and providing incentives to promote adoption of smart grid technologies.
He said this would improve the way transmission and distribution utilities manage the network and deliver power to consumers.
Velasco stressed that through a smart grid, implementing the lnterruptible Load Program (lLP) will become easier as transmission network provider NGCP and distribution utilities would be able to automatically control and switch off parts of customers’ load during periods of peak demand.
Prepaid electricity, he said, would be made possible through the deployment of advanced metering infrastructure (AMl) which is one of the components of smart grid.
A smart grid is a flexible electric management system that adds communication and computer intelligence to a local electricity distribution network.
This enables the user to track and manage power usage, leading to ways to reduce energy wastage.
Its system of flexible distribution and smart generation, which works in renewable energy, makes for efficient homes or enterprises.