LESS than one percent of the total households in Cebu still have no access to electricity, the Department of Energy (DOE) Visayas reported.
These residences are located in remote villages in the province.
DOE Visayas Acting Director Rey Maleza said the agency eyes to complete the total household electrification program in Cebu and other provinces in 2020.
In Cebu, Maleza said electricity has been accessed by 99.48 percent of the total households based on the 2015 national household survey.
Power distributor Visayan Electric reported that it has a 99.48 percent electrification rate, providing electricity to 486,517 of its targeted 489,073 households in Cebu.
As of December 2018, Cebu Electric Cooperative (Cebeco) 1, 2 and 3 also reported 99.71 percent, 96.61 percent and 124.79 percent electrification rates, respectively. The three Cebecos’ data for 2019 are still being validated, the DOE said.
Collectively, the three electric cooperatives have provided electricity to 433,384 households, which is higher than its target of 417,729 households.
Visayan Electric distributes power in the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Talisay and Naga, and in the municipalities of Consolacion, Liloan, Minglanilla and San Fernando.
The coverage areas of Cebeco 1 include Carcar City, Barili, Dumanjug, Ronda, Alcantara, Moalboal, Badian, Alegria, Malabuyoc, Ginatilan, Samboan, Santander, Oslob, Boljoon, Alcoy, Dalaguete, Argao and Sibonga.
Cebeco 2 supplies electricity to the cities of Danao and Bogo, and the towns of Borbon, Carmen, Catmon, Compostela, Daanbantayan, Medellin, San Remigio, Sogod, Tabogon, Tabuelan and Tuburan.
Toledo City and the municipalities of Asturias, Balamban, Pinamungajan and Aloguinsan comprise the franchise of Cebeco 3.
Maleza said the DOE Visayas had already identified these places that lack electricity.
Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, he said, had approached the DOE Visayas and urged the agency to fast-track its electrification project in the province.
The DOE central office has issued its Power Development Plan (PDP) 2016-2040, which provides an electrification roadmap toward total energy access in 2040 with specific target of the country’s 100 percent household electrification level by 2022 based on the 2015 census. Most of the remaining unserved areas in the Visayas are located in Samar and parts of Panay Island, he said.
As a strategy to reach these far-flung areas, Maleza said they are providing the remaining households without power supply with a solar home system.
He said it would be impractical to connect a few households in a remote area to power lines. The electric utilities would suffer heavy losses, he added.
A solar home system, according to energypedia, is a stand-alone photovoltaic system that offers a cost-effective mode of supplying amenity power for lighting and appliances to remote off-grid households. (WBS, LRC)