23,000 Buenos Aires homes still without power

The vast majority are users of the power company Edesur

Amid a record-breaking heatwave, 23,020 users continue without power in Buenos Aires and the greater metropolitan area. According to data from the National Electricity Regulatory Body (ENRE) this morning, 22,962 users are customers of power company Edesur and 58 are from Edenor.

This week, over a hundred thousand users were left without power, and tensions continue to increase between the government, power companies, and their users following over a month of intermittent power cuts. There were multiple protests across the city, setting fires in the street outside Edesur’s headquarters.

“It is no longer enough to demand that companies invest and that they deliver generators. We need a contingency plan, concrete action,” said the Argentine Association of Electrodependents, which advocates for the rights of people who are medically dependent on electricity.

In the City of Buenos Aires, the neighborhoods most affected by power cuts were Balvanera, Boedo, Caballito, Flores, La Paternal, Mataderos, Monserrat, Parque Patricios, Villa Lugano y Villa Devoto. 

On Thursday, Argentina’s Energy Secretariat told ENRE to file criminal complaints against the board of Edesur for misuse of funds, fraud against the public administration, and abandonment of persons. Presidential spokesperson Gabriela Cerruti said that the government would evaluate removing Edesur’s concession depending on the ENRE’s findings.

In February the government fined Edesur AR$1 billion and imposed an external audit — Edesur refunded the users that were victims of power cuts. 

Both Edesur and Edenor have had the exclusive concession to distribute electricity in the south and north of Buenos Aires respectively since 1992 — 95-year contracts that expire in 2087.

— with information from Télam


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