GPA is down two major Cabras generators and yesterday GPA GM John Benevente told us that Cabras four could be a “total loss.”
Guam – While the Guam Power Authority continues to struggle to meet the island’s power demands, they are now coming up with alternative methods to meet those demands, one of which involves what they are calling the “interruptible load program.”
At a Consolidated Commission on Utilities meeting today, GPA management presented five different proposals, but they focused largely on the interruptible load program that essentially involves asking large consumers of electricity, like hotels, to be available to jump off the grid to use their own generators.
This is because GPA’s power plants, Cabras 3 and 4 are still down as a result of last week’s explosion and there’s no telling how long they will remain out of service. In addition, other issues that could hamper their generation capacity is GPA’s need to shutdown Cabras 2 for at least three weeks for maintenance.
“We’re going to pay you to be available to get off the line at any time. What happens then is they utilize the money to either maintain their systems or upgrade,” said GPA General Manager John Benavente. “Again, we want a commitment. We want to ask them. This is not voluntary anymore–well voluntary to commit and agree that we are going to pay their services for availability that way we can assure the rest of our customers that we have that as a nominated capacity,” said Benavente.
The CCU appeared to be on board with whatever is necessary to help GPA deal with this crisis.
“We believe GPA needs to access interruptible load if we have to keep the lights on. Were all guessing today what the real cost might be and how much load may or may not be available. John’s taking a shot at what he’s willing to pay: $180,000 a month, $2 million a year. It’s not the end of the world in a $500 million power company. We’ve got some LEAC [Levelized Energy Adjustment Clause] flexibility because oil, thankfully is low. The biggest part of that is paying the hotels for the fuel they’re burning,” said CCU Board Member Simon Sanchez.
Also, Benevente says they could rehabilitate and activate the Dededo plants. The concern, however, is whether or not the US EPA would approve of this since those plants are older and could be a potential risk to the environment.
While Benevente says Cabras 4 is likely to be declared a total loss, one option is to expedite the repair of Cabras 3, if it is repairable at all.
GPA also plans to petition the Public Utilities Commission to expedite the combined cycle plant proposals near the northern wastewater plant.
The other proposals GPA presented today at the CCU meeting include:
– Expediting the Cabras 1 main transformer
– Discussing with NAVFAC the activation of the Orote/Dededo Plants
– Pursue the leasing of fast track capacity