ERC receives petition to employ a SAP-like intervention for electricity consumers

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Bayan, along with other interest groups, submitted a petition to the Energy Regulatory Commission submitted a petition requesting a social amelioration program for electricity consumers of Meralco who are affected by the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon.

One of the proposals of the petitioners is the waiving of electricity bills of households with an average monthly consumption of 200 kilowatt hour (Kwh) or lower.

The petitioners reiterated how difficult it would be for consumers to pay even with the staggered payment scheme because most of them lost their livelihoods during the community quarantine.

Meralco said that it was only one actor in the energy supply chain, and the others should be considered as well when making requests as this.

“Meralco on the average accounts for only 20 percent of the entire bill with the biggest share in the bill going to generation. Meralco rates are also socialized in structure as those consuming 100 kwh and below are given subsidies ranging from 20 to 100 pct. There is also an entire supply chain, we all need to consider as well, when deciding on matters such as what is being suggested because meralco is only one of the many entities included in the energy supply chain,” said Joe Zaldiarraga, spokesperson of Meralco.

“In so far as assistance during this time of the pandemic, Meralco has also been actively helping the government and its various agencies in the fight against Covid19. Aside from donating PPEs (personal protective equipment), alcohol, and resources to frontline agencies and organizations, Meralco energized in support of the DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways) several facilities converted to COVID centers, including World Trade Center, Rizal Memorial, and others. Further, in partnership with other corporations, Meralco committed to subsidize the electricity bills of these facilities while they are used as COVID centers,” he added.

ERC spokesperson Florisinda Digal assured that the petition will go through the commission’s regular process of evaluation and due process.

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