Transition: in Angers, AI is hunting energy waste

Come rain or shine, the workers at Equans struggle to keep to the schedule. They still have two years to change 30,000 lampposts in the Angers conurbation: masts, bulbs, lanterns and even cables if necessary. Works throughout the city, which make passers-by grumble… “But it’s for a good cause”, corrects this resident. “Thanks to this transformation, argues Jean-Marc Verchère, the mayor of Angers, each light point only consumes 15 to 30 watts instead of 150.”

This project is part of the largest “smart city” project in France, launched by Christophe Béchu, his predecessor as mayor of the Maine-et-Loire prefecture, appointed Minister for Ecological Transition. The contract worth 178 million euros over twelve years was signed at the end of 2019 with four French companies: Equans, a specialist in multi-technical services (ex-subsidiary of Engie acquired by Bouygues), Suez for waste, water and sanitation, La Poste for data, and Vyv mutuals to create new services. The objective: to acquire measuring instruments to better manage the public action of the community – “building permits, consumption of water, electricity, traffic…” mentions the mayor – particularly from a perspective environmental.

Operational end of 2023

Remote control of energy consumption is at the heart of the reactor. 56 million euros are thus intended for the renovation of the 30,000 streetlights, of which the city hopes to save 66% by 2025; 400 soil moisture detection probes rationalize watering with, as a result, 30% less water consumption; 3,500 sensors placed in all public buildings, i.e. 1 million square meters, will allow the control center, the “hypervisor”, to manage all their fluids, from heating to air conditioning and light depending on the room occupancy, to lower the score by 20%.

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