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Conflicts Over Water Management Of Cantareira System In Sao Paulo Metropolitan Area, Brazil (2004-2014)

Congress: 2015
Author(s): Ana Fracalanza (S„o Paulo, Brazil), Katia Ochsenhofer, Paulo Almeida, Adilson Trindade Junior
Universidade de Sao Paulo1

Keyword(s): Sub-theme 9: Water allocation among competing uses and users,
AbstractIntroduction: Currently, the S√£o Paulo Metropolitan Area (SPMA), in Brazil, comprises 39 municipalities, including 34 municipalities belong to the Alto Tiet√™ basin, and had 19,683.975 inhabitants in 2010. The central polo of the region, the S√£o Paulo city, presents itself as a megacity, with over 10 million habitant. The main wellspring of water supply for the population of SPMA is the Cantareira System (set of reservoirs), which presents several problems related to conflicts over water uses, these being associated with the shortage in quality and quantity of water in the region. Due to developmental policies that prioritized use of water for power generation, industrial use and soil irrigation, these conflicts led to adoption of water transposition from the Piracicaba River basin, which lies northwest of the SPMA, to the Alto Tiet√™ Basin, wich drainage area practically coincides with the SPMA territory. Since the granting of rights to use the water resources of this system, in 1974, the SPMA receives a water volume up to 31 m3/s, that is taken from the Piracicaba River Basin, which is part of the Hydrographic Basins of the Piracicaba, Capivari and Jundia√≠ (HB-PCJ) rivers, through water transposition system, which decreases the volume of influent water to the cities whose territory lies in the drainage area of the HB-PCJ, such as the case of the Metropolitan Region of Campinas. In a centralized manner, the granting was given in 1974 by Ministry of Mines and Energy of the Brazilian Government for 30 years to the Basic Sanitation Company of State of S√£o Paulo (SABESP). On the occasion of renewal of the grant for SABESP, which occurred in 2004, this time for 10 years, several operational conditions were defined for the continuity of the transposition. It should be noted that the grant renewal was discussed at several institutions involved in water management in regions of origin and destination of water, namely: by the technicians of the Water Regulatory Agency, established in 2000, called National Water Agency (ANA); by representatives of the agency responsible for issuance of licenses in the S√£o Paulo State, the Department of Water and Power (DAEE); and State, municipalities and civil society participants from both hydrographic basins committees involved with Cantareira System, namely, the Alto Tiete Hydrographic Basin Committee (HBC-AT) and the Piracicaba, Capivari and Jundia√≠ Hydrographic Basin (HBC-PCJ). The shared decision by the presented actors on the renewal of the Cantareira System in 2004 can be understood as the result of an exercise of governance of water involving different social actors and government agents in Brazil. In 2014 the governance framework of the waters of Cantareira System is greatly modified. In front of a water crisis which has several factors involved, from management issues to changes in rainfall patterns, the new renewal of the Cantareira System grant, that should have happened until August 2014, was suspended in a centralized manner by the State of S√£o Paulo Government and the National Government, represented by the ANA. Facing this scenario of changes in governance of Cantareira System water, the central objective of the study was to analyze the performance of the set of institutions responsible for managing the Cantareira System in the period between 2004 to 2014, and its implications on the current supply crisis in Sao Paulo Metropolitan Area, including the discussion of relevant judicial and administrative management responsibilities. Methods/Materials: The main scientific method employed was the bibliographic review, followed by a thorough document analysis (the term of the grant, resolutions, minutes, publications, documents) of the various institutions involved, focusing on the 2004 grant process, and then the proposal set for 2015. Results and Discussion: With regard to the company that received the right for the use of water from Cantareira System for over ten years, the SABESP, were imposed restrictions on the occasion of grant renewal in 2004, related to, among others: studies and projects to decrease its dependence on Cantareira System; maintain permanent loss control programs, rational use of water, waste reduce and encourage the water reuse. It is noteworthy that the above conditions have not been met within the prescribed period, and did not result in actions and programs that reduce the use of water from Cantareira System by SPMA, neither reduce the dependence on SABESP from this system. The aggravation of this delicate situation due to a period of high demand for water, and a severe shortage period, faced by the SPMA, places the institutional arrangement for the management of Cantareira System in center of an unprecedented conflict. And in this condition occurred the extension of period for analysis of the new renovation of the grant from Cantareira System waters, inopportunely scheduled for 2015, and no longer to August 2014, as agreed in 2004. In Brasil legal system, public agents are responsible for administration, integrated management of water resources through articulations between public authority, producers and other society segments through cooperation and results optimization, preserving the constitutionally guaranteed rights from an ecologically balanced environment. In this regard, the water provision as public supply should be provided by governments, for the entire population. Conclusion: The management effort performed by PCJ Committee, especially in articulation with the entities involved, as well as the approval of the Basin Plan, contrast with the imposed difficulties such as poor qualitative distribution of water, and also the absence of preparation of the Loss Control Program by SABESP. A new and promising perspective arises from the proposal made by PCJ Committee for the grant renewal, however constitutes on a fundamental premise of the management culture maturing by the system actors. The governance multi-level model, which develops in Cantareira System suffers impacts by the lack of consensus and cooperation among its participants, thereby undermining the sustainability in all dimensions of the shared and integrated management. Through liability lawsuits public agents can respond by actions or omissions processes that degrade the quality of life of the persons entitled to meet the ecologically balanced environment, in Brazil constitutional terms. 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