The Manila Electric Company (Meralco) and the Department of Energy (DOE) are calling on the public to embrace energy efficiency as a way of life to save more on electricity costs especially during the dry season.
Meralco is working hand-in-hand with the DOE in empowering consumers to continuously practice energy efficiency to better manage their electricity consumption, which usually spikes mainly due to increased use of cooling appliances.
During a webinar organized by Meralco, DOE Energy Utilization Management Bureau Director Patrick T. Aquino said energy efficiency is the “best energy-saving device” and customers have the power to control their consumption.
“Energy efficiency is our first fuel. It is our first line of defense,” he said as he highlighted the importance of changing consumption behaviors and investing in energy efficient technologies.
Aquino added that demand-side management can also contribute in ensuring sufficient and continuous supply for other electricity consumers.
“When we are able to effectively manage our demand, we are able to reduce our requirements for generation,” he said.
The call to continuously observe energy efficiency practices came just as the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) issued an El Niño alert, noting that there’s an 80% probability that this will start as early as June and persist until the first quarter of 2024.
To help businesses become more energy efficient, Meralco, through its business unit MServ, offers energy audit services and solutions such as data visualization, and energy efficiency reports for the seamless adoption of the practice.
“At any given level, we can support our customers, whether it is a small consulting job or a complete rehabilitation of their cooling system, we are flexible that way. They can reach out to us, and we can offer support to their energy efficiency journey,” MServ Vice President for Commercial Services Group Cecile Marvilla said in the same webinar, which was conducted in support of Republic Act No. 11285 or the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act.
Both Meralco and the DOE assured the public of their continuous efforts to ensure reliable electricity service and sufficient power supply throughout the dry season. They are also urging more companies to join the government’s Interruptible Load Program (ILP) to spare households from power interruptions during instances of Red Alert or when supply is insufficient to meet the demand.
The power distributor recently secured the commitment for 56 megawatts (MW) of additional de-loading capacity, and once enrolled, this will expand the distribution utility’s ILP capacity to 616 MW from 560 MW currently. As of today, there are 117 companies enrolled in the ILP within the Meralco franchise area. The DOE, for its part, has discouraged generation plants from scheduling outages and testing units during the dry season.
“Meralco is one with the government in pushing for energy efficiency and conservation not just during the critical dry season but as a way of living that Filipino consumers can embrace,” Meralco Spokesperson and Vice President for Corporate Communications Joe Zaldarriaga said.