EDP investment brings electricity to rural Ourique
Ourique’s mayor was a model of politeness, enthuiasm and optimism as he signed a deal with energy supplier EDP for its engineers to connect rural customers in the Baixo Alentejo to the electricity supply.
This modern wonder has been denied in many areas of the municipality as it has not been economic to run power cables to farms and cottages whose inhabitants had been judged as potentially low users.
An EDP investment of €1.3 million has been praised by Marcelo Guerreiro, Ourique’s mayor, who expects work to start shortly which will, “upgrade the county, support economic activity, and improve the lives of local residents.”
“The arrival of electric light,” says Guerreiro, “will remove the ghost of Christmas past,” and bring many rural dwellers into the 21st century, should they wish to become EDP customers.
The deal is for the construction of 8 kilometres of Medium Voltage (MV) cable, 9 kilometres of Low Voltage (LV) cabling and the installation of 11 transformer posts. Such was the importance attached to EDP doing its job, that the Secretary of State for Energy, João Galamba, was present and noted, with a sagacity born of many a campaign, that, “one of the main pillars of civilization is electric light.”
The mayor went in to overdrive, praising everyone and everything present and commenting that, “it is for the future of the rural world that we are here, in a convergence of wills that honour the Republic, local government and one of the most relevant companies of the national economy, EDP. For a long time, the Municipality of Ourique has been betting on the economic resurgence of its land by supporting economic activity and the quality of life of the inhabitants of Ourique.”
Guerreiro was unstoppable, recalling that, “we had a problem created by the negotiation of Portugal 2020, by the previous government, which left out projects eligible for rural electrification. Where there is a problem it is necessary to mobilise wills to find solutions, sensible, sustainable and with a sense of the future. The first phase of the Rural Electrification Project in the Municipality of Ourique, between the Municipality of Ourique and EDP Distribuição, with the decisive commitment of the Government, is one of those happy convergences of wills to realise a global investment of around 1.3 million euros in rural electrification.”
EDP’s investment in this basic service is, for the mayor, “important for people. It is important for the economy of the rural world. It is important for the territory, which is valued and prepared for the future arrival of Alqueva water. We are, in this way, a kind of shareholder of the future in Ourique and the Baixo Alentejo.”