Endesa, S.A., an electric utility company, has inaugurated the control and research center of Latin America's first SmartCity.
'Cidade Inteligente Buzios' in the town of Armacao dos Buzios in Rio de Janeiro state has been designed to serve as a benchmark for smart grid applications and technologies and efficient energy consumption. Investment in the three-year roll-out phase of Cidade Inteligente Buzios amounts to BRL40 million (around E15 million).
The SmartCity project draws on the experience and success of other initiatives developed by Enel and Endesa including Malaga SmartCity (2009), which has transformed this city into one of the smartest in terms of electricity distribution at the global level. Also in Spain, the group has Barcelona SmartCity, while in Italy it boasts projects in Turin, Genoa and Bari and in Chile there is another in Santiago de Chile.
The initiative, carried out via Ampla, Endesa's Brazilian distribution subsidiary, will enable the city and its residents to benefit from different energy tariffs depending on when energy is consumed, the use of LED public street lighting systems and greater incentives to use energy efficiently in public buildings by enabling the consumption of each appliance to be controlled in real time. A smart distribution grid with automatic control systems also helps to improve the quality of electricity supply.
In addition to the technological advances achieved, the aim is to raise awareness of efficient electricity consumption among the residents of Buzios. To this end, workshops have taken place in state schools and electricity consumption training and management courses have been offered to residents.
The city has four cars and two electric motorcycles used locally by the company, a recharging station for electric vehicles and solar and wind microgeneration facilities. The company has also installed LED lights and other remote controlled lighting, a free wireless internet access network, a recyclable waste collection point (Punto Consciencia Ecoampla), and efficient showers on the city's Manguinhos and Geriba beaches.