The maintenance works scheduled by the Malampaya gas-to-power facility has been completed safely and ahead of schedule, the Department of Energy (DoE) announced on Friday.
The facility underwent maintenance shutdown from January 28 to February 16, which was supposed to have been accompanied by a power supply deficit of about 700 megawatts (MW) against the Luzon grid. But the gap was averted by collaborative efforts among stakeholders and the contingency plan of the Energy Department, the DoE said.
“The measures undertaken helped avert any power outage as a result of the Malampaya shutdown,” Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said.
“Throughout the Malampaya downtime, the power supply reserve was maintained at normal levels. We are grateful for having hurdled the critical period that could have resulted in the issuance of grid alerts,” he said.
On Thursday, the Malampaya consortium reported to the DoE that natural gas supply is again available to power plant customers. The consortium comprises Shell Philippines Exploration B.V., Chevron Malampaya LLC and PNOC Exploration Corporation.
“The consortium also reported that all maintenance activities were done, taking into account the safety of all personnel,” Cusi said.
The Malampaya facility supplies natural gas requirements of power plants in Batangas, namely the 1,000-megawatt (MW) Sta. Rita, 500-MW San Lorenzo, 1,200- MW Ilijan, 97-MW Avion and 414-MW San Gabriel.
During the Malampaya maintenance shutdown, the DOE required the affected power plants to run on alternative fuel but even at a higher cost than the Malampaya natural gas. Natural gas costs around P4 per kilowatthour (kWh), while replacement fuel such as diesel costs around P6-P8 per kWh.
Cusi said consumers should continue to adopt energy efficient conservation practices that have helped cushion the impact of the Malampaya maintenance shutdown on power supply.