Economy Minister Paulo Guedes said this Thursday (26) at a public hearing in the Senate that the extra fee on the electricity bill, charged through tariff flags, should be increased again due to the water crisis. For the minister, “it’s no use sitting around crying.”
Brazil is facing the worst water crisis in the last 91 years, and the tariff flag was already readjusted in June this year. According to the columnist of G1 Ana Flor, the red flag should undergo a new readjustment next week, during a meeting of the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel).
“We have to face the crisis. We will have to raise the flag, the flag will go up. I will ask the governors not to automatically go up [o ICMS da energia elétrica], they end up making money on top of the crisis. We have to face it, it’s no use sitting there crying,” Guedes declared.
On Wednesday, the economy minister had already asked “what is the problem” of energy becoming “a little more expensive”.
The hydroelectric reservoirs in the Southeast and Midwest – which account for 70% of the country’s energy generation capacity – are with 22.5% of the storage capacity, and there is no prospect of heavy rain in these regions until mid-October.
Thermoelectric plants – more expensive and polluting – are being activated to guarantee the energy supply. Therefore, there was an increase in the cost of energy generation, and the value is passed on to consumers.
Water crisis: government announces measures to try to save energy
Measures to reduce consumption
This Wednesday (25), the government announced an “award” for consumers who manage to save electricity – however, the rules for the program were not disclosed.
In addition, it also determined that federal public agencies must reduce energy consumption by 10% to 20% between September 2021 and April 2022.
At the time, the Minister of Mines and Energy, Bento Albuquerque, once again ruled out the possibility of energy rationing.
The measures were announced after the Electric Sector Monitoring Committee (CMSE) assessed, on Tuesday (24), that there is a “relevant worsening” of water conditions in the country.
In November, when the rainy season starts, the ONS predicts that the Southeast/Midwest reservoirs will reach 10% of capacity.