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Schneider Electric and FAS form a partnership to bring renewable energy to communities in the Amazon

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Schneider Electric and FAS form a partnership to bring renewable energy to communities in the Amazon

August 26
06:36 2023

Schneider Electric, a leader in the digital transformation of energy management and industrial automation, has established a collaboration agreement with Fundação Amazônia Sustentável (FAS) to identify and implement joint actions to access renewable energy for indigenous and riverside communities and to reduce emissions of carbon in the Legal Amazon region.

The goal is to find partnerships to install microgrid systems, or microgrids in Portuguese, with solar energy sources, to provide clean and safe electricity to populations in remote areas in the Amazon.

The President of Schneider Electric for South America, Rafael Segrera, points out that this initiative is the extension of a pilot model installed in the community of Tumbira, Amazonas, in 2012. “Each community, which previously depended on polluting diesel generators, noisy, expensive and connected for 3 to 4 hours a day, it received a microgrid and now has clean, safe and uninterrupted energy”, he says.

At the time, Schneider Electric Brasil donated all the equipment and co-financed a technical training given by SENAI to residents, so that they could participate in the installation of the system and the electrical distribution network, learning how it works. In October 2021, the system was renewed and updated.

The expansion strategy promoted by Schneider and FAS is directly related to the global sustainability strategy of Schneider Electric and its Foundation, which in 2021 established six long-term commitments, including projects with a strong local impact. The company estimates that it will impact 1.3 million people in South America, with approximately 60,000 in Brazil by 2025.

“As our mission is to promote the sustainable development of the Amazon, this collaboration with Schneider Electric has total synergy with our operations in the region”, explains Virgílio Viana from FAS. “Within two years, we want to accelerate the installation of more microgrids and improve the quality of life in communities.”

How microgrid technology works

The microgrid solution exists exactly to create small power generation systems in remote regions, where the electrical grid structures cannot reach due to several factors. This technology may or may not be connected to utilities and has three advantages: increased sustainability, energy security and resource savings.

A 2022 report by the World Bank, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) in conjunction with the International Energy Agency (IEA) and International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) ), showed that currently 733 million people still do not have access to electricity. At the current pace of electrification, around 8% of the world’s population will remain without access in 2030, around 670 million.

“We need to make the region’s energy matrix cleaner, with renewable sources, to reduce carbon emissions and fight climate change, but without leaving anyone out of this transformation”, he adds. “At Schneider Electric, sustainability is also related to social inclusion, and access to energy is part of this account as well”, concludes Rafael Segrera.

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