Economy

Power restored to 98% of Albay households after late-year typhoons

Electricity has been restored to 98% of households in Albay, which absorbed extensive damage from the series of typhoons that hit Luzon late last year, the National Electrification Administration (NEA) said on Friday.

In a statement Friday, the NEA said that the Albay Electric Cooperative, Inc. (ALECO) reported Thursday that it had restored power to 170,560 out of the 197,878 affected households.

ALECO said power was being restored to 2,755 households. Meanwhile, 24,563 homes were destroyed or damaged and unable to receive power.

Areas where power was fully restored are: Legazpi City, Ligao City, Camalig, Daraga, Guinobatan, Manito, Polangui, and Santo Domingo. Partial restoration was reported for Tabaco City, Rapu-Rapu, Jovellar, Oas, Pio Duran, Bacacay, Libon, Malilipot, Malinao, and Tiwi.

NEA added in the statement that power has restored to 78% or 31,591 of households in Catanduanes, according to a report from First Catanduanes Electric Cooperative, Inc. (FICELCO).

There are currently around 24,067 households in Catanduanes still without access to power. Some 8,943 households are being reconnected, while restoration is not possible for 15,124 damaged or destroyed houses.

Citing FICELCO, the NEA said that power in Pandan has been fully restored, while electricity in Viga, Caramoran, Panganiban, Virac, Bagamanoc, Bato, Baras, San Miguel, San Andres, and Gigmoto municipalities has been partially restored.

Last year, FICELCO borrowed P25 million in calamity loans from the NEA to rehabilitate its power distribution facilities which were damaged by Super Typhoon “Rolly” (international name: Goni) and Typhoon Quinta (international name: Molave).

Earlier this month, the NEA said that it handed out P128.08 million in calamity loans to electric cooperatives in 2020. The calamity loan had an interest rate of 3.25% per annum, with a 10-year repayment term and one-year grace period.

Albay and Catanduanes were among the Bicol provinces that were hit by Super Typhoon Rolly, Typhoon Ulysses and Typhoon Quinta (international names: Goni, Vamco and Quinta) last year. — Angelica Y. Yang

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