Economic cost of Davao brownouts seen to be steep


The power shortage Davao City is currently experiencing can cost the city up to P400 million a daily.

This estimate was made by one of the city’s economic leaders, Joji Ilagan-Bian, who said that the ones to be most affected are those in the service sector – restaurants, business offices, call centers – which account for Davao City’s  daily economic output.

The shortage has compelled Davao Light and Power Company (DLPC), the city’s main power distributor, to impose daily rotating power brownouts since last year.  The scheduled brownouts have recently been extended from two to five hours.

According to DLPC, the shortage has worsened, reaching 100 megawatts a day.  Every megawatt of deficit translates to an hour of power interruption.

The power crisis in the city was triggered by the effects of the El Nino phenomenon and was exacerbated by the recent shutdown of the coal-fired power plant in the city’s Toril district due to maintenance and engineering breakdowns.

DLPC president Arturo Milan explained that the drought has drastically reduced the output of its main power suppliers, the Agus and Pulangi hydropower plants.

In an interview last year, the Davao City Chamber of Commerce (DCCCI) said that businessmen in the city were more prepared to cope with brownouts, given the experience they had in 2013 when Mindanao faced its biggest power crisis.

Businessmen realized the need to invest more capital in their businesses so they can purchase standby generators to minimize the impact of rotational brownouts.

DCCI also said that those most adversely affected by the brownouts are those in the Information and Communications Technology sector.


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