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CASURECO: Lower power rate in Naga City to take effect in March

By Keren Anne Bernadas

NAGA CITY --- Camarines Sur II Electric Cooperative, Inc. (CASURECO) General Manager Emelita Candia announced on Wednesday, that they have recently entered into an agreement with a new power supplier called PSALM Corporation. This, the consumers hope, will finally reduce the alarming high residential power rate being charged by the cooperative to its consumers.

The PSALM or Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation come into terms for a 10 megawatt-power supply with Casureco II.

However, in a phone interview with Rinner Bucay, Casureco II spokesperson, he said that despite the agreement, they have started competitive selection process for more power suppliers with lower costs because “the 10 MW load from PSALM is not enough to provide the base load of power demand in Casureco II which range from 40 to 70 MW in a month.”

This demand of electricity, the spokesperson said, is being supplied to larger franchise area and more number of commercial establishments, contrasted with other areas in other electric cooperatives. Bucay added that the factors to be considered for the current expensive power tariff roots from unprocurable power industry of coal and diesel, as they are currently under contracts with other cooperatives, not to mention the ongoing global crisis.

He said that this mitigation may provide additional power supply but could be felt around March but only with a minimal change. Still, Bucay said, it is a result of continuous efforts done by its board and management since 2022.

This came after Mayor Nelson Legacion, on Monday, expressed his determination to address the distressing power fees by providing feasible interventions to solve the problem.

“Mga ordinaryong consumers, mas lalong nadidipisilan, ata tios na. Pambakal po ninda ning pagkakan at basic needs, napupunta sa pambayad sa bill sa kuryente. Maski satuyang mga negosyante, nag-aagraray, at si mga prospective investors o kaya su mga nagpupuon pa lang, nagmamaw-ot na mag negosyo sa satuyang siyudad nadidisganar,” Legacion said in vernacular.

The residential power per kilowatt hour for Casureco II consumers, including Naga residents, costs around P17.30, a cut higher of six to seven pesos compared with other cooperatives in the province.

This is why Legacion said the city government is exploring three options to address this high electricity cost in the city. These include the use of hydrogen power plant and solar panel which may take longer time to execute.

Third, Legacion said that a “simple but strong political will” of its management may address the plight of poor consumers and business owners in paying higher electric bills.

Further, Bucay said to all its consumers, “Salamat po sa patuloy na suporta despite the challenges na ating kinakaharap. Patuloy pa rin kayong nagpapakita ng interest at pagtulong sa pamamagitan ng pagbayad ng inyong monthly bill. Rest assured po na na gagawin namin ang lahat ng paraan para magkaroon ng secured na kontrata ng power suppliers sa susunod na buwan sa mas mababang halaga.” (PIA5/Camarines Sur)


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