REN - Redes Energéticas Nacionais delivered nine vehicles to nine Fire Brigades (CETE - Paredes, Ourique, Fanhões, Coimbra, Fafe, Ponte da Barca, Freixo de Espada à Cinta, Viseu, Arruda dos Vinhos), as part of its supporting local communities' policy, reinforcing the Company's commitment to preventing and fighting rural fires.
Through a close partnership with Autoridade Nacional de Emergência e Proteção Civil (National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority), with ICNF - Instituto da Conservação da Natureza e das Florestas (Institute for Nature and Forest Conservation) and with the Municipalities, REN has, in the defence of forests against wildfires, since 2009, donated 80 vehicles to multiple institutions, including fire brigades and municipal fire prevention teams.
To João Conceição, Executive Director of REN, 'the donation of these vehicles recognises the work of fire brigades throughout the year. For REN, prevention against rural fires is not carried out only during the critical season. We have several prevention actions in articulation with the competent authorities in what concerns the cleaning of the easement corridors to increase the resilience our infrastructures and of the territories where they're located to rural fires, simultaneously creating opportunities for the Firefighters and for other Civil Protection Teams to fight fires'.
REN in defence of the forest
• REN along with ANEPC, ICNF and the municipalities where power lines and gas pipelines allocated to the concession of the National Electricity Transmission Network and the National Natural Gas Transmission Network are located, has been carrying out relevant work in the prevention of rural fires.
• REN is currently responsible for cleaning over 21,000 hectares of woodland throughout the country. In the last five years, over 39,000 hectares have been cleared, the equivalent of a motorway between Portugal (Lisbon) and Mozambique (Tete). In 2020, around 10,603 hectares were cleared, of which 9,587 regarding easement corridors and 1,092 regarding concessions' own properties.
• These works are carried out on lands that do not belong to REN, requiring previous contact with the landowners before any intervention. In 2020, 31,093 landowners were contacted.
• REN has carried out a number of actions within the scope of defending forests against fires. In 2020, the Company's service providers worked more than 441,000 hours, which represents 213 people per working day assigned to work in the forest.
• Also in this context, REN has a Prevention, Alert and Action Plan in operation during the rural fire season, which applies to all of REN's operational and local activities. Its implementation is based on the level of readiness of the resources of Autoridade Nacional de Emergência e Proteção Civil (National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority), which is defined annually in the Special Device for Fighting Rural Fires.
• In 2020, from July to 30 September, six prevention and surveillance teams (EPV - equipas de prevenção e vigilância) were active. The teams were active 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and are equipped with first intervention equipment, enabling them to make a first intervention to combat the outbreaks of fire.
• Since 2009, REN has donated 80 vehicles within the scope of the prevention of forest fires. 53 vehicles were donated to Firefighters and 27 to the municipalities' fire prevention teams.