DAMAGE sustained by electric cooperatives from typhoon Odette (international name: Rai) is now estimated at P1.12 billion, about triple the previous estimate, the National Electrification Administration (NEA) said Thursday.
The initial estimate was P373.12 million. The NEA said the latest estimate covers 11 cooperatives as of late Wednesday.
The agency said 74 cooperatives reported some sort of damage resulting from the storm, affecting 3.65 million households.
The NEA still needs to restore power to 236 of the 936 municipalities in the Visayas and Mindanao.
The National Power Corp. (NPC) reported an estimated P19.34 million worth of damage to power plants in the Visayas and Mindanao.
NPC Energy Services Department Manager Homer S. Galang said during a briefing that P8.45 million represents major damage, while P10.89 million is the estimate for facilities completely destroyed.
Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi on Thursday issued a memorandum on the suspension of the biofuel blending requirement for gasoline and diesel fuels distributed in Bohol to ensure the continuous supply of petroleum products to the province.
In July, the Department of Energy (DoE) revised the rules on biofuels accreditation to improve the enforcement of the blending requirement. Biofuel refiners and importers must inform the DoE when they are due to sell locally produced biofuel or import ethanol into the market.
The Philippines requires the blending of 10% bioethanol with all gasoline products sold on the domestic market as required by the Biofuels Act of 2006.
The temporary waiver of the rules in Bohol is expected to lower pump prices.
“All oil companies are still required to ensure their petroleum fuels meet the minimum quality requirement necessary for the safe operation of vehicles,” according to the memorandum.
Bohol Governor Arthur C. Yap this week appealed to the Energy department to triple the volume of petroleum products to be sent to the province amid long lines at fuel stations. — Marielle C. Lucenio