March 2, 2023

ARGENTINA: Fire Knocks Out Half Of Argentina'a Power Grid During A Heat Wave. Fire Brought Down Crucial Power Lines, Forcing Nuclear Power Station To Be Taken Offline. Power Largely Restored.

DBC NEWS Daily published March 2, 2023: Fire knocks out half of Argentina's power grid.
DW Español published March 1, 2023: Masivo corte de luz en Argentina. Unos 20 millones de argentinos se quedaron sin energía eléctrica tras un incendio de una línea de alta tensión. Los problemas sacaron de funcionamiento a la central nuclear Atucha II y afectaron al área metropolitana de Buenos Aires y varias otras regiones. El apagón ocurre en el verano austral y en plena ola de calor en el país sudamericano.
Interesting how these were the only two videos I could find about this incident in Argentina. I tried several search terms and back door searches through Google. But found no other news reports. (emphasis mine)
Bueno Aires Times, Argentina local
written by Staff
Wednesday March 1, 2023

Residents across Argentina were hit by a massive power cut on Wednesday as temperatures soared above 35 degrees Celsius; Much of Buenos Aires metropolitan area left without electricity, as well as several provinces nationwide.

Residents across Argentina were hit by a massive power cut on Wednesday as temperatures soared above 35 degrees Celsius.

The massive outage, which hit around around 4.30pm local time, affected large swathes of the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area (AMBA), hitting several neighbourhoods in Buenos Aires City and large parts of the Conurbano, the populous region that encircles the capital.

Users on social networks also reported widespread power cuts in Mendoza, Santa Fe, Córdoba, Neuquén and other provinces.

According to initial reporting by several local outlets, the power cut came after the Atucha I nuclear power plant went offline. A second nuclear power plant, Atucha II, has been out of service since last year due to maintenance work.

Nucleoeléctrica, the state firm in charge of operating Atucha I, told the La Nación newspaper that "a problem with the grid took us out of service."

Government sources told Noticias Argentinas that the outage was caused by "several failures in the interconnected system", including the shutdown of the Atucha I nuclear power plant. They said the cause of the power cut would be investigated.

The websites of both the ENRE (Ente Nacional Regulador de la Electricidad) national regulator and Cammesa, the firm that manages the local electricity market went offline.

The electricity failure arrived as 11 provinces in the centre and east of the country were in the midst of a heatwave, with temperatures surpassing 35 degrees Celsius in several regions.

Buenos Aires City recorded the hottest summer since records began in 1906 over the 2022-2023 period with an average temperature of 25.6 degrees, according to the National Meteorological Service (SMN).

In the capital, power outages were reported in Colegiales, Villa Lugano, Parque Patricios, Mataderos, Palermo and Caballito, among others.

Electricity failures were also reported in the provinces of Jujuy, Salta, San Luis, Tucumán, La Pampa, La Rioja and Santiago del Estero.

BBC News, UK local
written by Will Grant and Alys Davies
Thursday March 2, 2023

Power has largely been restored in Argentina after more than half of the country was left without electricity for several hours.

More than 20 million people in major cities and large swathes of the countryside were affected on Wednesday.

The blackout is believed to have been caused by a large fire in open fields west of the capital, Buenos Aires.

The blaze brought down crucial power lines and forced a nuclear power station to be taken offline.

The blackout comes in the middle of a heatwave and drought in Argentina - with temperatures consistently above 35C (95F) in some parts of the country.

It brought daily life to a halt in some regions, with classes suspended, businesses shut and many having to go without air conditioning or refrigeration.

Water distribution services were interrupted and some were left stranded on public transport services which ground to a halt.

Alejandra Rodriguez, a waitress in Buenos Aries, told AFP news agency her business was struggling without a generator.

The worst thing about the "ordeal" was not knowing how long the blackout would last, she added.

"We cannot work, we cannot clean ourselves, our bathrooms have run out of water, we cannot attend to people."

Power cuts are not uncommon in the country. In 2019, a massive electrical failure left tens of millions of people in the dark in Argentina and neighbouring Uruguay.

There have already been several smaller outages this year, coinciding with the dry and hot conditions.

FRANCE 24 English published January 13, 2023: Argentina ended 2022 with 94.8% inflation, highest in 32 years. Argentina registered inflation of 94.8 percent in 2022, its highest annual figure since 1991, the Indec national statistics institute said on Thursday. Latin America's third largest economy has one of the highest inflation rates in the world but December's monthly figure of 5.1 percent continued a general downward trend since a peak of 7.4 percent in July.
Bloomberg Quicktake published January 26, 2023: Banks in Argentina Need More Vault Space to Store Piles of Pesos Argentina’s peso bills are depreciating so quickly as inflation approaches 100% that banks are running out of space to store bank notes.

Banks in the crisis-prone economy, including Banco Galicia and the local unit of Spain’s Banco Santander SA, are installing more vaults to store bank notes at a time the largest denomination bill is worth less than $3, according to people familiar with their plans. Just last week, a business chamber in Buenos Aires called on the central bank to start printing larger-denominating bills to tackle the increasing problems of transacting with an ever-greater number of bills.

The central bank has so resisted the calls to print a bill with denomination of more than 1,000 pesos, which on Wednesday was only worth $2.65 when valued at commonly-used, informal exchange rates. With prices rising by nearly triple digits at an annual pace, the dilemma has left Argentines withdrawing dozens of bills at ATMs for ordinary amounts, while tourists often carry wads of cash.

For banks, which have to transport the cash to bank branches and ATMs, that also opens unique space challenges.
Global News published February 14, 2023: "I live day to day," doctor in Argentina says as inflation nears 100%.

Argentinians are increasingly feeling the impact of one of the world's highest inflation rates, with annual price rises nearing 100 per cent, straining people's wallets as the cost of food, gas and services far outstrips salaries.

The South American country, which has grappled with high inflation for years, is set to announce January data on Tuesday, with monthly inflation expected to accelerate to around 6 per cent and the 12-month figure nearing three digits.

"The truth is that I live day to day, I look for low prices, and I go to markets. We look for where the meat is cheaper, the vegetables are cheaper, and hunt for online promotions to get by," said Gisella Saluzzo, 30, a doctor in Buenos Aires.

Rampant inflation has weighed heavily upon the economy, forcing the central bank to hike interest rates to a high of 75 per cent, and has battered the popularity of the center-left Peronist government of President Alberto Fernandez.
And in another interview Brian Muliane, Chiropractor said, "In 2021, you were allowed to work. Now with the closed import, there are many who can't even work if they wanted to, in our work, between paying for one thing or another, along with taxes, they're drowning us and they don't allow us to work." (emphasis mine)

No comments: