Meralco to add FIT all charge at Php0.04 per kWh this Feb

By , on February 4, 2015

Photo courtesy of Meralco / Facebook
Photo courtesy of Meralco / Facebook

MANILA  — The Manila Electric Company (Meralco) will add the renewable energy (RE) Feed-In-Tariff (FIT) allowance charge of Php0.04 per kilowatthour (kWh) to its consumer billing this February.

”Yes, that’s right, Meralco will add the FIT all charge this February,” Meralco spokesman Joe Zaldarriaga told PNA Tuesday.

The added charge will affect customer billing with increases of varying amounts, depending on their monthly consumption.

For consumers using 200 kWh per month — the charge will add Php8.00 to the billing, while for those with 300 kWh consumption, the increase would amount Php12.

For those with usage reaching 400 kWh, the bill will hike by Php16, and those with 500 kWh consumption will receive a Php32 boost.

The FIT all is a specialized payment system for RE projects, created through the RE Law of 2008.

The RE Law further assigns the National Transmission Corporation (TransCo) as administrator of the FIT all, serving as the bank of the payments.

Last month, the FIT all was petitioned to be stalled at the Supreme Court by Atty. Remigio Michael Ancheta, whom requested the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) to stop its previous order approving TransCo to charge an additional Php0.04 per kWh.

Ancheta noted the FIT-all fund will total Php230.12 million per month, resulting in Php2.7 billion this 2015, based on Transco’s national sales forecast for this year at 68.01 trillion kWh.

As of Jan. 20, the Department of Energy (DOE) cited backing a total of 14 RE projects — through Certificate of Endorsements (COEs) for FIT all to the ERC — with a power of 304.5 Megawatts (MW).

”Presently, the DOE already issued COEs to 5 biomass, 3 hydro, 2 solar and 4 wind projects with a total Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) capacity of 304.051 MW,” the DOE said.

On the other hand, Zaldarriaga could not confirm yet whether how much the generation charge will increase this month, citing Meralco has no computation for the billing yet.

Recently, Meralco President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Oscar Reyes noted the generation charge will certainly increase this month due to the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) trading.

The looming charge is likely due to the hiked threshold mechanism at the WESM, which was approved by the ERC on December 23 at Php9.00 from Php8.186 per kWh that lapsed on December 8.

Reyes added the consecutive three month decrease for the generation charge — starting October — cannot be sustained until January.

It dominates a huge part of Meralco’s monthly billings, comprising 40 percent to the total bill.

The January bills for December usage noted a total decrease of Php0.19 per kWh, or Php38 for households with a typical monthly consumption of 200 kWh.

The distribution utility said total power requirements came from Power Supply Agreements (PSAs) at 52 percent, Independent Power Producers (IPPs) at 45 percent, and from the WESM at 3 percent.

Meanwhile, Meralco has recently filed a petition to the ERC, an application for an Interim Power Supply Agreement (IPSA) with Panasia Energy Inc., which may affect the generation charge billing for February at Php6.09 per kWh.

It is scheduled for dispatch at 270 MW from January to April, then 180 MW from April to July.

Zaldarriaga said he cannot confirm yet whether the IPSA will result in the generation charge boost, since he does not yet have the list of suppliers which passed off Meralco with electricity.

The Manila Electric Company is the largest distribution utility in the country, with its franchise supplying a huge part of Luzon.