Dams that hurt the Pantanal and Amazon
Dams that hurt the Pantanal and Amazon
Date: 8/26/2012 Publication: O GLOBO-RJ
CPI in Mato Grosso finds irregularities in 35 plants and seeks forfeiture of licenses for five of them
Two sides. Although clean, the energy produced in plants such as stone bridge, in Sonora (MS), also impact
SÃO PAULO, the lack of a broad study that determines the impact of construction of several hydroelectric plants in the same basin, directly affects the upper Paraguay Basin, which feeds the Pantanal. But not only does she. In Mato Grosso, also the rivers of the Amazon basin are the reflection of construction of these dams.
The Juruena River, for example, that received a hydroelectric power plant and four small hydro (SHP, up to 30 MW), has dramatically reduced its flow in some places, by several dams. The water, which typically reaches 80 cm, 1 meter and low for a blade of no more than 30 cm. Second State Rep. Jess Dal Bosco (DEM), this is just one of the problems detected during the Parliamentary Committee of inquiry (CPI) of SHP in Mato Grosso. Completed in April, the report has not yet been voted on in the plenary of the Legislative Assembly.
The CPI, which began in March 2011, examined 41 environmental licensing processes of the State Secretariat of 154 listed by the environment (Sema) and 35 of them showed irregularities. In the report, the Parliament asks that five operating licenses are cassadas. In the document, 441 pages, it is also recommended that Mato Grosso do a Bill preventing the construction of more plants in the Paraguay river basin.
A list of the Secretariat of Environment of Mato Grosso enumerates SHP projects in 148, being 55 power plants in the Amazon basin and 28 in the basin of Alto Paraguay, where there are already 23 joint ventures of this type in operation. Last Thursday, the Federal Court suspended works and studies of new hydroelectric plants in the basin of Paraguay at the request of the Public Ministry, until it’s done a study of the effect of the plants on the full flow of the Pantanal.
-The granting of power plants in the State of Mato Grosso were granted in early 2000, when Brazil faced rationing of electricity. These licenses have generated a parallel market and were sold, passing from hand to hand-says Dal Bosco.
According to the Deputy, the concern to generate energy in short time meant that projects were approved without taking into account damage and environmental degradation. Dal Bosco says that the Mato Grosso has little return with the plants and therefore proposes in the report the creation of four taxes that should have their revenue for municipalities.
“The Government, the State and Federal Public Ministry and the State Council of the environment (Consema) urgently need to review this situation, especially in power plants built in series in the same basin”, says the report from the CPI.
According to the document, most of the plants even has “fish ladder”, which allows these animals rise the rivers to spawn, the known spawning. With this, the fish would have disappeared in the municipalities of Dom Aquino and São Pedro da Cipa: “there are three piracemas that fish do not reach these municipalities because they fail to transpose the barrage of PCH”, says the report from the CPI.
Some small hydropower plants exceeded the flooded area provided for in the initial project, flooding properties. Another irregularity established was the illegal DEFORESTATIONin areas of permanent preservation, made to house construction sites.
In a single work, would have been hired 177 chainsaw operators. At least a River have been diverted to use ten thousand bags of chemical fertilizer, polluting the waters salvaged.
The document CITES that the environmental licensing processes received conclusive technical advice before advance licences had been deferred and some plants have dams with height almost ten metres above the stipulated in the contract. In at least one case, the flooded area was four times higher than allowed.
The document cites the cases of three plants located in parallel, “thereby by the same water availability on site”. The result is that they cannot produce energy. Another controversial point, the impact on INDIGENOUS lands, would also have been disregarded in some cases.
-Was not considered even the potential use of our rivers to waterways, which are needed in the Northern State. Now we have a Bill to require the installation of locks-says Dal Bosco.
Charles Lenzi, President of the Brazilian Association of clean energy Generation (Abragel), which includes the SHPS, says it is unaware of the report:
-Our guidance to all members is to be complied with all the rules of environmental licensing legislation-says.