July 23, 2019
Latest News

Electricity restored in Argentina after historic blackout

Buenos Aires, Jun 16 (efe-epa).- A massive failure in the electrical grid caused Argentina to wake up Sunday on Father's Day and with elections in four provinces, to a historic blackout.

Shortly after 7am on a day marked by heavy rains in much of the country, houses and streets were sitting in darkness. It was not until three hours after it was reported that the situation began normalizing in the country, and at 9.35pm all of the supply had been restored.

The sudden power outage — which also affected Uruguay and parts of Paraguay — led to the suspension of train and metro services in Buenos Aires, although major airports were operational as they had their own generators.

The blackout also affected the distribution of drinking water, which led the company in charge of the water supply in Buenos Aires and its populous urban belt — which brings together 13 of the 40 million people living in Argentina — to urge users to ration their consumption at home.

An emergency plan was activated for hospitals in Buenos Aires to ensure care of patients, with generators in intensive care areas and operating rooms.

In Twitter messages posted seven hours after the start of the blackout, President Mauricio Macri said what happened was unprecedented and that it would be thoroughly investigated.

Energy Secretary Gustavo Lopetegui convened a press conference in which he said the blackout was "very serious" and cannot happen again.

According to the official explanation, the power grid failure was caused by a collapse of the Argentine Interconnection System (SADI), in particular an electricity transport connection in the northeast of the country near the border between hydroelectric power plants Yacyreta (Argentine-Paraguayan project) and Salto Grande (Argentine-Uruguayan).

Over the next 48 hours, electricity distribution companies will be required to submit a preliminary report on what happened and a full report within 10 days, and those found responsible will be subject to sanctions as according to law.

In particular, the provinces of Santa Fe, San Luis and Formosa were affected, where regional elections were held amid reports of problems with lighting polling stations early Sunday.

In the southernmost province of Tierra del Fuego, located on the island of the same name, elections were also held. It was the only one with electricity as it did not depend on SADI for its power supply.

The historic blackout comes just over four months before the presidential elections on Oct. 27, preceded by a primary on Aug. 11, and has already been criticized by major opponents.

Alberto Fernandez, Macri’s main rival for the presidency in October, referred to rises in electricity tariffs led by the government in recent years.

"Millions of Argentines, who have had to pay a fortune in tariffs that have benefited the friends of those in power, are still waiting for energy to return to their homes," said Fernandez, the leader of Frente de Todos (Front for All) alliance, who will go to the polls with ex-president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner as vice-presidential candidate.

Since Macri came to power in Dec. 2015, he has spearheaded a policy of increasing tariffs of electricity, gas and water, with the aim, as reiterated by the government, to normalize the energy system after years of divestment, one of the strongest criticisms against the Kirchner administration.

"The blackout comes after three years of tariffs of more than 1,000 percent in energy. They told us it was for investment. And the result is a huge blackout," tweeted politician Sergio Massa, who called on officials responsible for the electrical system to go to Congress to explain the "disaster."

rgm/sp/tw

News history
Power blackout hits most of Venezuela

Caracas, Jul 22 (efe-epa).- A new power blackout left much of Venezuela without electricity on Monday starting at 4:40 pm, and the state-run Corpoelec,...

Iguacu, 1,300 km of hidden paradise among 6 hydroelectric plants

By Ana Paula Chain

British Airways suspends all flights to Cairo, citing security concerns

London, Jul 20 (efe-epa).- British Airways said Saturday that it has suspended all flights to Egypt's capital for seven days, citing unspecified security...

Kenya inaugurates Africa's largest wind farm

Loiyangalani, Kenya, Jul 19 (efe-epa).-Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday inaugurated Africa's largest wind farm, a 310-MW power station located in a...

Japan, South Korea trade fresh barbs over export curbs

Seoul, Jul 19 (efe-epa).- South Korea on Friday said Japan’s curbs on exports of high-tech materials critical for manufacturing of memory chips was in...

Trump nominates Eugene Scalia to replace scandal-ridden labor secretary

Washington DC, Jul 19 (efe-epa).- The president of the United States on Thursday nominated a right-wing corporate lawyer to be the new secretary of labor...

Microsoft's cloud business drives record sales

By Asa Fitch and Dan Gallagher

China reaffirms zero tolerance to corruption in New Silk Roads initiative

Beijing, Jul 18 (efe-epa).- China’s top anti-graft watchdog on Thursday reaffirmed its pledge of zero tolerance to corrupt practices in the country’s...

KLM diktat to cover up while breastfeeding in flights causes global outrage

The Hague, Netherlands, Jul 18 (efe-epa).- Dutch airline KLM is facing a storm of criticism for asking mothers to cover up while breastfeeding their babies...

Australian MasterChef star fined for underpaying his employees

Sydney, Australia, Jul 18 (efe-epa).- A high-profile chef who serves as a judge on the Australian version of the popular television show MasterChef and is...

Japan's trade surplus fell by 19 percent in June

Tokyo, Jul 18 (efe-epa).- Japan recorded a trade surplus of 589.5 billion yen ($5.5 billion) in June, a figure that is 19 percent lower than the one...

US-China trade war threatens economic growth in LatAm

Guayaquil, Ecuador, Jul 17 (efe-epa).- The already flagging economies of Latin America could be hurt by the ongoing trade war between the United States and...

Japan's curbs can damage global tech industry, South Korea says

Seoul, Jul 17 (efe-epa).- South Korea on Wednesday said Japan’s curbs on exports of high-tech materials critical for manufacturing of memory chips could...

Amazon faces EU antitrust probe for third-party retailer data use

Brussels, Jul 17 (efe-epa).- The European Commission on Wednesday opened a formal investigation into US tech giant Amazon to see whether its use of...

Paraguay taxi drivers again at war with Uber

Asuncion, Jul 16 (efe-epa).- Hundreds of taxi drivers suspended their service this Tuesday to again drive through the streets of Asuncion with a long...

Mercosur seeks to build on EU trade deal with new agreements

Santa Fe, Argentina, Jul 16 (efe-epa).- South American economic bloc Mercosur is seeking to build on a trade agreement reached with the European Union and...

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin

Washington DC, USA, Jul 16 (efe-epa).- Social media behemoth Facebook will not offer its Libra cryptocurrency services until it had been proven to meet the...

737 MAX woes hobble budget carrier Ryanair

By Oliver Griffin

Energy company says faulty cable was behind power outage in New York

New York City, USA, Jul 15 (efe-epa).- United States energy company Con Edison, which is responsible for the power outage that affected over 73,000...

Mercosur looking to expedite enactment of pact with EU

Santa Fe, Argentina, Jul 15 (efe-epa).- Officials from Mercosur member-states Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay said here Monday that they will urge...

Billionaire Buffett's real estate unit joins forces with Spain's LARVIA

New York, Jul 15 (efe-epa).- Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, the real estate unit of billionaire Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. conglomerate,...

Trump says tariffs taking a toll on China's economy

Washington, Jul 15 (efe-epa).- President Donald Trump said Monday that the tariffs imposed by his administration were taking a toll on China's economy,...

Huawei plans layoffs in US as blacklisting takes a toll

By Dan Strumpf

South Korea, Israel to push for early FTA deal

Seoul, Jul 15 (efe-epa).- The leaders of South Korea and Israel on Monday agreed to accelerate negotiations to reach a free trade agreement.

I agree Welcome to news4europe.eu. We use cookies to improve your online experience. Find out more.