The government intends to reward consumers who reduce consumption by 10% to 20% with a bonus of R$0.50 for each kilowatt-hour saved. According to the rules presented by the Ministry of Mines and Energy (MME), whoever saves less than 10% will not receive a bonus, and whoever exceeds the 20% level will not receive an additional bonus either. The rules were presented by the folder at a press conference this Tuesday, 31.
Although the government has considered a bonus of R$ 1 for each 1 kWh saved, technicians considered the value to be unaffordable.
For a comparison, the average tariff paid by residential consumers today is R$ 607.60 per MWh – that is, R$ 0.60760 per 1 kWh. The problem is that the generation of additional energy is much more expensive than this average. The William Arjona thermoelectric plant, in Mato Grosso do Sul, has a cost of R$ 2 thousand per MWh, or R$ 2 per 1 kWh.
On average, a Brazilian family consumes 163 kilowatt-hours per month, equivalent to R$139.26, including taxes. If they manage to save 20%, for example, this same family would pay a 36% smaller bill: in addition to the 130.4 kWh, they would receive a bonus on the 32.6 kWh saved and would pay R$ 88.43.
Bonus funding has come to a halt. The Ministry of Economy did not accept to open extraordinary credit to fund the bonus. On the other hand, although the government wants to reward those who save, it does not want to punish those who spend more with a fine or compulsory cut – as was done in 2001.
The program provides that the set of consumers will pay, proportionally, for the additional cost of generation, through a fee called System Service Charges (ESS).
The ESS is paid via the tariff flag and, if the cost of the plants exceeds the amount collected, it is transferred to the annual tariff adjustment of each distributor.
After paying this cost, the consumer who saves energy will have a portion of this amount returned to his electricity bill – but only his individual savings, and at a lower amount than what he actually paid.