The Department of the Interior and Local Government on Tuesday reminded local government units (LGUs) to ensure the proper storage of Covid-19 vaccines amid the rotating brownouts caused by power plant outages in Luzon.

“At this time of pandemic, vaccines are more valuable than gold and therefore contingency plans should be implanted soonest to mitigate the rotational brownouts being implemented by the NGCP,” Interior Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya told reporters.

Malaya was referring to the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines, which has announced rotational brownouts in the Luzon grid.

The brownouts were due to manual load dropping, done “to maintain the integrity of the power system.”

On Tuesday, the Luzon grid was placed under red alert from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., and yellow alert from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. to midnight, according to the Department of Energy.

Vaccines require storage in cold storage units, with some requiring intense subzero temperatures of -70°C. John Ezekiel J. Hirro