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Brazilian power distributors will install about $670 million of smart meters a year from 2014 after the electricity regulator mandated the technology for all new installations.
Utilities will install about 4.5 million of the power gauges from 2014 to at least 2017, Maria Gabriela da Rocha Oliveira, a Sao Paulo-based analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance, said today in a telephone interview. Smart-meter makers expected the government to force utilities to substitute all 65 million of the nation’s meters with smart ones by 2020, New Energy Finance said in a report yesterday.
The requirement only applies to new installations, excluding low-income households, and some clients that request a replacement as of February 2014. So-called smart meters allow utilities to monitor clients’ power consumption remotely.
“It would have been better if it was mandatory to replace all meters,” Oliveira said. “This is a step in the right direction though” because the equipment will allow Brazilians to install solar panels and trade power back to the grid.
Businesses and homeowners with smart meters will also be able to adopt a new pricing mechanism for power which offers three tariffs that vary depending on national electricity demand, according to the report.
Agencia Nacional de Energia Eletrica approved the new rules on Aug. 7, the Brasilia-based electricity regulator said on its website.
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