Singapore’s ST Engineering selected for Rio de Janeiro smart city project

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The Smart Luz consortium has selected Singapore-based conglomerate ST Engineering for the provision of solutions for a smart city programme in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

The Smart Luz consortium comprises Brazil‑based street lighting firms Salberg and Proteres Participações, IoT firm HTI, consulting company Arc and Green Luce. The consortium has won a BRL 1.4 billion ($256.5 million) tender to implement the Public Lighting public-private partnership project. 

The project will include the installation of 450,000 smart street lights, 5,000 Wi‑Fi hotspots, 4,000 waste sensors, 6,000 traffic lights, and 10,000 cameras to prepare the city for smart city services.

ST Engineering will provide the consortium with platforms that will enable some 300,000 smart street lights to be connected and some 25,000 devices and sensors to be managed via WI-FI hotspots.

The technologies will also enable waste management and traffic junction sensing for future smart city applications. ST Engineering will provide operation and maintenance services for the infrastructure for a period of ten years.

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The contract is one of the world’s largest single deployments of a city-wide, public, smart street light control project, according to ST Engineering.

The United States International Development Finance Corporation is funding the programme aimed at improving energy efficiency, services and security for Rio de Janeiro residents.

Ensuring the 18.5 million street lights in Brazil are smart and energy-efficient will help the country to align with goals set under the Paris Agreement of achieving a 10% energy efficiency gain in the electricity sector by 2030, according to the statement.

Yan Herreras Yambanis, the vice-president of finance at Smart Luz, said: “The Rio de Janeiro Public Lighting PPP project will be the largest integrated Smart City deployment in Latin America, and will have a transformational impact, as well as long-lasting and continuous benefits for the sustainable development of the city of Rio de Janeiro and its population.”

Whilst energy efficiency is critical to help Brazil address current energy shortages due to the drought, a lack of appetite by the government and energy stakeholders to maximise its use has crippled the market over the past years, according to the Climate Policy Initiative (CPI).

CPI states that the majority of energy efficiency rollouts in Brazil were implemented in response to specific episodes of difficulty in meeting the demand for energy and targeted residential consumers, yet sectors such as street lights and industrial consumers have the probability to reduce usage and enable the expansion of renewables portfolios.

CPI reiterates that there is a need for increased funding within the sector and the enactment of supporting policies if Brazil is to achieve its greenhouse gas emissions reduction goals.