Neoenergia invests in network digitalization, modernization, and expansion with a focus on the continuous improvement of service quality for its 15.7 million customers. This strategy is reflected in the company's distributors’ indicators. In the fourth quarter of 2021, Neoenergia Coelba (BA), Neoenergia Pernambuco (PE), Neoenergia Cosern (RN) and Neoenergia Elektro (SP/MS) have kept better results than the levels established by the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel) for DEC (Equivalent Duration of Interruption per Consumer) and FEC (Equivalent Frequency of Interruption per Consumer).
During the year, a strategy was carried out to continue improving each day the quality of the supply to the company's customers, focusing on a strategy that brings together technology, expansion, and improvements. The result demonstrates the commitment to customers and to the country's development.
Neoenergia Coelba recorded DEC at 11.47 in the fourth quarter of the year, better than Aneel's forecast, which was 13.68, and better than the 12.43 recorded in the same period of 2020. For Neoenergia Pernambuco, the index was also within the regulator's limit, reaching 12.03, below 13.00 in 4Q20 and the maximum limit established, which was 13.27.
Neoenergia Cosern's indicator was 6.78 in the quarter, while the maximum regulatory level was 11.35. Rio Grande do Norte distributor's DEC is also better than the last quarter of 2020, when it reached 9.20. Neoenergia Elektro' indicator was 7.38, lower than 7.57 in 4Q20 and below Aneel's limit of 8.15.
Since the beginning of the group's management at Neoenergia Brasília (DF), in March last year, the distributor has been showing consistent indicators towards the regulatory limit. In ten months, Neoenergia installed 271 automatic reclosers in its concession area, thus increasing by more than 90% the amount of this type of equipment in the company. In addition, 43 self healing schemes have been implemented, a technology that automatically restores supply in the event of an outage.
Self healing allows that the network section where a problem occurs - such as tree branches hitting the cables, for example - is isolated and services can be resumed for as many customers as possible within 60 seconds. Altogether, Neoenergia has about 4,700 reclosers at the five distributors, of which 40% feature self-healing, installed in 244 cities in five states and in the Federal District.
In addition, Neoenergia has made robust investments in infrastructure improvements and expansion, allowing strengthening the security and reliability of supply in the concession areas. The five distributors will invest R$ 3.9 billion in 2021, of which R$ 2.6 billion for network expansion, including the construction of new substations anddistribution networks. Considering the fourth quarter, the companies' investments reached 1.1 billion, a 35% growth compared to the same period in 2020.
The distributors also implement an annual preventive maintenance plan, which is based on the network's technical criteria, including poles, transformers, conductors, and other components. The group also applies technology in these activities. For example, in network inspection, thermo-vision cameras installed in vehicles and drones are used to check the temperature of cables, connections, and transformers in the energy grid, identifying points of change that may require intervention or monitoring.