Improvement of the power situation in Panay, a month away - DOE

Relief from the Panay power situation is less than a month away. The Panay grid will be strengthened upon the completion of the Cebu-Negros-Panay (CNP) transmission upgrade by the end of March. The regular maintenance shutdown of the Palm Concepcion Power Corporation (PCPC) will also be finished by the end of March. The Department of Energy (DOE) emphasizes the need for generators, distribution utilities, and the system operator to continue cooperating to maintain the grid's stability and quickly recover from any power interruption.

While waiting for the completion of the transmission upgrade and maintenance of PCPC, the general public is encouraged to conserve energy, especially for the month of March.

The Panay Island is powered by four (4) large coal power plants with a total capacity of 451 megawatts (MW) and nine (9) smaller diesel/bunker and renewables with a total capacity of 220.3 MW. The large coal power plants consist of three (3) units of Panay Energy Development Corporation (PEDC) and one (1) unit of Palm Concepcion Power Corporation (PCPC). Aside from generators on the island, 180 MW can be drawn from Negros to Panay through a submarine cable. The total demand for Panay Island is below 400 MW.

Currently, one of the large coal power plants, PCPC, is under regular maintenance shutdown until 30 March 2024.

On 01 March 2024, at 6:59 PM, the three units of PEDC went on shutdown resulting in a partial blackout of the Panay sub-grid and some parts of Negros. Around 80 MW of the power demand of Panay was served initially by the Negros-Panay submarine cable and later by the smaller power plants on the island. By 9:53 PM, one of the PEDC units returned online, followed by another PEDC unit by 11:22 PM. The third PEDC unit was synchronized back to the grid at 8:55 AM today, 02 March 2024. 

Short-term solutions by the System Operator, such as using 10% head room of the large coal plants as contingency reserve, are currently in place. Long-term solutions are in the pipeline, such as the energization of several renewable and conventional power plants and the completion of transmission projects to support the power generation projects and the growth of the load centers. ###