MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay (ViaNews) – Smart meters are devices that measure the energy consumption digitally. The digital energy technology is well known in Europe and giving its first steps in Argentina.

The Enel Group, through its Argentinian subsidiary, Edesur, has launched its most ambitious plan to date in the country. The pilot plan consists in having five thousand smart meters installed in different residential areas before the end of the year. The Smart meters will be installed along the southern districts of Greater Buenos Aires and in other places in the Buenos Aires Province, where the company operates.

The first devices have been already installed in the neighborhood known as “Caballito”, setting a step forwards the digitalization of the service, by introducing new smart technologies.

According to Mr. Alessio Montone, the Enel´s Smart Meter Solutions Global Chief, the pilot plan should be in place for a period of six months. Afterwards, the collected data will be evaluated by the national energy regulator, ENRE, (Ente Nacional Regulador de la Electricidad).

The main objective, if everything goes according to plan, is to then make the digital system available to all its around three million customers.

That second stage is estimated to take two to three years to be accomplished, starting at the end of 2018. Today, Edesur accounts for 15% of physical sales in the country.

“Back in 2001 in Italy, we started the implementation of smart metering massively and sixteen years later, we are now proceeding to replace the first smart meters installed back then by new ones,” Montone said.

“It is not only about the device but the system which allows us to improve the technical quality of the service, and introduce other benefits, also for the company”. Montone added.

The devices will be fabricated locally, which also gives an extra boost to the local economy. Edesur will provide the smart devices with no additional charges to its customers.

“The digital system makes us more efficient. In other countries and due to smart metering, among other factors, we have been able to reduce our operating costs by 40%.” Montone stated.

Smart meters is a process that leads to a future of self-generation energy system in homes. A new law on the distribution and generation of renewable energies in Argentina has been approved back in September of this year, allowing residential customers and small companies (Pymes) to choose their electricity provider, use their home-generated energy and sell the excessive in the future.

In this video, Edesur introduces its pilot plan:

The Enel Group is present in other Latin American countries, such as Chile, Brazil, Colombia, and Perú.

The technology to be used in Buenos Aires is the same the Group has been using in cities like Santiago de Chile or any city in Italy.

Last week in London, Mr. Alberto de Paoli, Financial Executive Director of the Italian Group, announced an investment plan for Argentina for a total of US$ 1.350 million American dollars, in energy distribution and generation areas, during the next three years.

Meanwhile, Enel X, (new global business division to the company) has signed a partnership with Renault to provide the chargers for the 100% electric vehicle, the Renault Kangoo ZE, that will start being sold in Argentina next year. This division is in charge of providing services for electric mobility, energy efficiency and the security of their homes and offices, among others.

The new law approved in September, also establishes that all building constructions should look at an energy distribution system from a renewable energy source which best suits it in alliance to its location. An environmental impact study must be done whether required.

“Argentina is going to be a global force in the clean energy sector.” President Mauricio Macri stated.