Metro Manila could be hit by one-hour rotating brownouts

06/02/10 - MANILA, Philippines - Metro Manila and nearby provinces could experience one-hour of rotating brownouts until Friday as power reserves are thinning in Luzon.

Power distributor Manila Electric Company or Meralco issued a statement on Tuesday, warning households and establishments to prepare for power outages.

"There will be a tentative 1-hour rotational brownout today, (June 1) between 10 am - 4pm due to the insufficient generation power capacity of the power generation suppliers."

Meralco said electricity is likely to be interrupted because at least three power plants are undergoing maintenance and repair.

It said that a defective boiler tube of the coal-fired Masinloc power plant in Zambales is being repaired. The natural gas-fired San Lorenzo Power Plant in Batangas is also undergoing repair, along with the Limay combined cycle power facility in Bataan.

The maintenance work on these three plants means the temporary loss of some 655 megawatts in the Luzon power grid.

The National Grid Corp. said current power demand in Luzon is about 7,400 megawatts, but supply is short at 7,000 megawatts.

Meralco spokersperson Joe Zaldarriaga said Manila and nearby provinces were spared of the outages on Tuesday, as the San Lorenzo plant's repair may be completed sooner.

There is still a possibility that the rotating brownouts will be implemented as electricity reserves are still thin.

"If Masinloc and San Lorenzo are not put back, the power shortage will continue until Friday. It just so happened that the repair and maintenance work on the three plants had to be done all at the same time. Tomorrow until the rest of the week, I don't know what will happen," said Zaldarriaga. (abs-cbnnews)

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