Sweltering heat props up use of air conditioning. 'Specific failures' along the distribution line spark street, social media protests
Argentina announced sanctions on electricity companies Edesur and Edenor following the power outages suffered by hundreds of thousands of citizens in Buenos Aires City and surrounding areas, amid a historic heat wave that brought stifling temperatures for 18 days.
New Year arrived in Argentina with much needed rainfall relief, but also with a hefty increase in urban transport fares, the same with fuel prices at the pump and the promise of a list of 200 products included in a price agreement with the county’s major supermarkets and retailers.
Blackouts continued in several neighborhoods of Argentina's metropolitan Buenos Aires area while protests increased including pickets in highways, attempts to set on fire power distributors offices or kidnap power companies' officers while the only resource from government has been to blame companies and threaten to take over utilities.
Argentina on Thursday threatened to nationalize utility companies Edenor and Edesur after power outages left large areas of the capital Buenos Aires and surrounding suburbs in the dark, just ahead of the austral summer. If they are not willing to give people the service they deserve, we will be willing to take over that service, said cabinet chief Jorge Capitanich.
People out in the streets banging pots and pans, or protesting burning tires and garbage containers in powerless neighborhoods, while an estimated 30.000 businesses in Buenos Aires City and metropolitan area are organizing demanding compensation for losses suffered because of the collapse of the power distribution system overwhelmed by an extraordinary heat wave with temperatures in the high thirties and low forties.
A heat wave which reached 36 Celsius caused on Wednesday a massive blackout in Argentina’s capital with an estimated three million people suffering lack of power plus such emblematic sites as Government House (Casa Rosada), Congress and the posh district of Puerto Madero.
The fountains in Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires emblematic Plaza de Mayo were left unlit Tuesday and Wednesday night, after electricity company Edesur cut off power due to the city’s government's failure to pay the bill.