Luzon spared from power outages due to Malampaya glitches
MANILA, Philippines – Luzon was spared from power outages on Thursday, June 18, despite technical glitches in the Malampaya gas facility, which accounts for 40% of the Luzon grid's requirements.
Luzon has been normal so far, said Department of Energy (DOE) Director Myleen Capongcol.
Based on the National Grid Corporation’s (NGCP) power situation outlook as of 1 pm Thursday, Luzon’s power reserve stood at 1,183 megawatts (MW), comfortably over the ideal buffer of at least 647MW.
On June 15 and 17, Luzon was placed on yellow alert by the NGCP due to a gas flow restriction from the Malampaya facility.
These yellow alerts are triggered when power reserves fall below 647MW.
The Malampaya facility supplies natural gas to Kepco Philippines’ 1,200MW Ilijan combined cycle plant and to the 1,000-MW Sta Rita and 500-MW San Lorenzo natural gas plants of First Gas, a subsidiary of the Lopezes' First Gen Corporation.
These gas plants, in turn, supply about 45% of the power requirement of the Manila Electric Company’s (Meralco).
The gas restriction on Wednesday limited to about 430MW the Sta Rita and San Lorenzo plant’s combined natural gas allocation.
DOE said that gas supply from the Malampaya platform was still constricted as of Thursday.
“Malampaya gas supply is still restricted as of now. We are awaiting feedback from SPEX (Shell Philippines Exploration BV),” Capongcol said.
She added that one unit of Ilijan was still down due to the gas restriction and, for the meantime, Sta Rita and San Lorenzo units were running on gas and the rest on liquid fuel.
SPEX is the upstream company of Shell in the Philippines in charge of operating the Malampaya deep water gas-to-power project. It has so far refused to comment on the Malampaya gas restriction incidents. – Rappler.com
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