Partner spotlight: MasterCard, GE, Itron, Enel, Alstom

Fri, 2015-12-04 06:00 -- Kevin Ebi

Scroll down for short takes from Council partners …

MasterCard identifies African cities with strongest potential
The latest annual ranking from Council Lead Partner MasterCard finds the Mozambique capital of Maputo has the strongest potential of inclusive growth of the major African cities studied. The 2015 MasterCard African Cities Growth Index evaluated 74 cities for inclusive urbanization and growth potential. Ranking immediately behind Maputo were Casablanca, Morocco and Lagos, Nigeria. MasterCard praised Maputo for its strong share of foreign direct investment as well as its efforts to improve government effectiveness, regulatory quality and ease of doing business. Accra, Ghana had placed at the top the past two years but fell to seventh in this ranking because of declines in revenues from oil.

GE lands major wind deal in Thailand
Council Lead Partner GE won a deal to supply turbines for a 60 megawatt wind farm being built in Petchaboon, Thailand. The project is designed to provide renewable energy for people living in the northern part of the country. It will supply enough energy to power 36,000 homes. Thailand has been making significant progress in getting more power from renewable sources. Today, about 12% of the country’s power comes from renewable sources; by 2021, that’s forecast to grow to 25%.

Itron meters receive additional safety certification
Several residential meters from Council Lead Partner Itron have received an additional, voluntary certification from Underwriters Laboratories, providing extra assurances those meters are safe. Itron’s OpenWay, CENTRON Bridge and CENTRON II C12.19 meters have received UL 2735 certification, a certification created to address customer questions about meter safety. While the certification is voluntary, more utilities are beginning to require it before beginning installations to assure homeowners the meters are safe.

Enel supplies Romania with smart meters
Council Lead Partner Enel has finished installing 30,000 electric smart meters in Romania in a rapid deployment pilot project that took less than two months. The company says early results are promising. Among other things, the meters help it improve customer service by being able to address many issues without having to send a technician out to visit the customer. Enel Distributie Romania would like to give all customers meters within five years — an additional 2.7 million meters.

Alstom supplies traction system for new Beijing line
Council Lead Partner Alstom has been selected to provide the traction system for Beijing Metro Line 6. The system will be used on 160 cars schedule to begin service by the end of 2018. Alstom specially designed and developed the Optonix traction system for the Chinese market. It uses electrical braking and a lightweight, compact design.  In addition to Beijing, other major Chinese cities including Shanghai, Nanjing, Qingdao, Xi’an and Chengdu plan to use it.