Cost of generating electricity will be increased 4.5 percent

The nation’s price regulating agency has approved a 4.5 increase in the rate the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad charges for generating electricity. Even if residents here do not get their power directly from the firm known as ICE, they likely will feel the impact.

The regulating agency, the Autoridad Reguladora de los Servicios Públicos, said it was beginning a study of other power providers with the goal of giving them an extra increase to compensate them for what they will have to pay to ICE.

The increase is designed to cover the extra costs to the company for producing electricity with petroleum-fired generators. The base period was the first half of the year. ICE uses thermal generation when there is not sufficient power being produced by hydro plants.

The Compañía Nacional de Fuerza y Luz, the Empresa de Servicios Públicos de Heredia, the Junta Administrativa del Servicio Eléctrico de Cartago and the nation’s many cooperatives purchase power from ICE. The firm also has direct customers.

The price regulating company said an ICE customer with a monthly electric bill of 14,400 would pay 600 colons more, a bit more than $1.20. ICE customers also will pay other costs that also were increased, including public illumination.

ICE sought a 26 percent increase in generation.

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