• ‘Make power line obstruction a crime’

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    THE National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) pushed for the passage of a proposed law that will criminalize the act of deliberately obstructing power lines.

    Lilibeth Gaydowen, NGCP Regional Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Officer, said the proposed “Anti-Power Line Disturbance Act” will give the power grid operator authority to remove any obstruction to power lines.

    If enacted and approved, it will criminalize deliberate planting of trees and construction of any structure within the right-of-way clearances of power lines across the country.

    Originally proposed in the 16th Congress by the House of Representatives, the NGCP is hopeful that the 17th Congress will refile the bill through the House Committee on Energy headed by Rep. Lord Allan Velasco of Marinduque and the Senate Committee on Energy under Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian.

    Under the bill, planting of trees and construction of any structure under or within the right-of-way clearance of all power transmission and distribution lines will be prohibited and authorizes NGCP, distribution utilities and electric cooperatives to cut or prune trees and remove any obstruction.

    Gaydowen said uncooperative landowners and claimants who maliciously plant trees and build structures within the right-of-way clearance have been causing delays in their construction and maintenance activities.

    A recurring and worsening issue, especially in Mindanao and North Luzon, she added, has delayed both current and new projects.

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