Earth Hour saves Veco 14-MW in electricity use

EARTH HOUR: A young student reads only in candle light when lights turned off, for one hour, in many places of the globe last Saturday as part of the earth saving hour. Cebu Gold Star Daily photo by Sammy Yncierto
EARTH HOUR: A young student reads only in candle light when lights turned off, for one hour, in many places of the globe last Saturday as part of the earth saving hour. Cebu Gold Star Daily photo by Sammy Yncierto

By JADE LOPEZ, Reporter

CONSUMERS of the Aboitiz-led Visayan Electric Company (Veco), were able to contribute in the reduction of 14.25-megawatts (MW) of electricity consumption during the recently concluded Earth Hour Philippines 2009.

Veco Corporate Communications Manager Ethel Natera revealed in a text message yesterday that consumers- households and corporations- within the company’s franchise area had reduced total electricity consumption by 6.1 percent or 14.25-MW at 8:30 in the evening of March 28 compared to the same time period in March 21.

A week prior to the Earth Hour campaign, Natera said Veco monitored total power consumption within its franchise area- covering Lilo-an, Cebu in the north and Talisay City in the South- which peaked at 234.45-MW at 8:30 p.m. that same day.

Natera said the company is yet to determine the total savings in electricity cost for the 14.25-MW reduction in power usage last Saturday. “It is still hard to tell as of now because we need to determine how many households and companies participated because the electricity rates vary,” she explained.

In a separate interview, Carlos Co, chairman of the Cebu Power Core Group of the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry said Cebu’s business establishments were “very supportive” of the Earth Hour campaign, which is a testament to their growing concern on the issue of global warming.

“Earth Hour is a symbolism for the world capacity to reduce power consumption and reduce carbon emission. We were successful in doing it. The capability is there so long as everyone participates,” Co said.

Earth Hour Philippines 2009 is an international campaign calling for serious and sustained action on global warming. Last March 28, it called on all everyone to participate in a grand switch off campaign by turning off all essential lights from 8:30 to 9:30 in the evening.

Earth Hour Philippines 2009 hopes to involve 10-million Filipinos and 500 businesses in key cities across nationwide. Globally, it aims to reach one billion people in 1,000 cities worldwide.

Other organizations representing civil society, business communities, religious sector, youth, national agencies and local governments have likewise extended their support for the event.

SM City Cebu Mall manager Sherry Tuvilla said 100 percent of their mall’s tenants participated in the Earth Hour endeavor and she vowed that they will continue to look for more ways on doing energy saving measures.

Tuvilla said SM Cebu, which is one of the city’s major consumers of electricity utilizing around 70,000 to 80,000 kilowatts on a daily average, have seen the need to take an active stand on the call to help save the environment through Earth Hour.

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