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Brazil is part of:
Latin America and Caribbean · South America ·
Water Basins of Brazil:
Amazon · Chuy · Corantijn-Courantyne · Essequibo · La Plata · Lagoon Mirim · Maroni · Oiapoque-Oyupock · Orinoco ·
Facts & Figures edit
Capital Brasília
Neighbouring Countries Argentina, Peru, Paraguay, Colombia, Uruguay, Venezuela, Suriname, Guyana, Bolivia
Total Area 8,511,965 km2
  - Water 55,455 km2 (0.65%) / 65 m2/ha
  - Land 8,456,510 km2
Coastline 7,491 km
Population 186,404,900 (22 inhab./km2)
HDIA 0.807 (2007)
Gini CoefficientA 57 (1995)
Nominal GDPB $1,665,000 million
GDP (PPP) Per CapitaB $10,300
Land UseC
  - Cultivated Land 661,299 km2 (7.82%)
     - Arable 586,036 km2 (6.93%)
     - Permanent Crops 75,263 km2 (0.89%)
     - Irrigated 29,200 km2
  - Non cultivated 13,161 km2 (92.18%)
Average Annual RainfallD 1782 mm
Renewable Water ResourcesE 8,233 km3
Water WithdrawalsF 59.3 km3/yr
  - For Agricultural Use 62%
  - For Domestic Use 20%
  - For Industrial Use 18%
  - Per Capita 341 m3
Population with safe access to
  - Improved Water Source 90%
     - Urban population 96%
     - Rural population 57%
  - Improved Sanitation 75%
     - Urban population 83%
     - Rural population 37%
References & Remarks
A UNDP Human Development Report
B CIA World Factbook and Wikipedia
C CIA World Factbook Country Profiles
D Aquastat - FAO's Information System on Water and Agriculture
E CIA World Factbook
F Earthtrends

> Articles | Projects & Case studies | Publications & Web resources | Who is who | Maps
> Sector Assessment | Sector Coordination | Donor Profile

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Country Profile: Climate, Geography, Socio-Economic Context

Research by the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (EMBRAPA) and the Applied Meteorological and Climatic Centre of Investigation for Agriculture indicates a likely temperature increase of up to 1ºC as early as 2020. This could have substantial implications for agricultural output in Brazil, as coffee production could fall by between 15% and 24%, soy bean production by 14%, rice by 4% and corn by 2% (Steinmetz et al., 2007).

Aside from potential effects of climate change, existing climatic variation linked to El Niño and La Niña events have a significant impact on freshwater availability, as these cycles introduce considerable fluctuation in rainfall levels. Generally El Niño brings abundant rainfall while La Niña years are associated with drought, which affects not only crop and livestock production in the larger region where the Lake Merín basin lies, but also hydropower and wind energy generation. Here again, Uruguay is more exposed to these risks, as it relies almost entirely on hydropower for electricity generation.

Country Profile: Water Bodies and Resources

Country Profile: Legal and Institutional Environment

In January 2006, the National Water Resources Council of Brazil approved the national water resources plan to establish guidelines and public policies aimed at increasing the quantity and quality of the water supply and improving demand management. The plan adopts a river basin approach and considers water to be a public good, a position essential in promoting sustainable socio-economic development. The plan, which is based on broad consultation with the public and water sector representatives, establishes guidelines, programmes and goals for the period to 2020 (MMA-SRH, 2006).

Brazil’s 1934 Water Code provides the framework for all of the country’s water-related legislation. Under the Federal Constitution of 1988, the states are responsible for all surface water resources except those lying in more than one state, which the federal government controls. This division results in implementation problems, as rivers under federal jurisdiction cannot be managed effectively without taking state-controlled rivers into consideration. The National Water Law (Law 9.433) of 1997 established the National Water Resources Policy (NWRP) and the National Water Resources Management System (NWRMS). The Law identifies water as a public good, a limited natural resource with an economic value, and gives priority for water use in the event of drought to human and animal consumption. The NWRP takes the river basin as the basic unit for water resources planning and management. A key aspect of the policy document is that it requires decentralization of, and public participation in, water resources management (Aquastat, 2000).

The NWRMS, under the Ministry of the Environment, implements the NWRP. It is made up of the National Council on Water Resources, the National Water Agency, the River Basin Committees, the River Basin Water Agencies and relevant NGOs.

The National Council on Water Resources is the highest organization in the NWRMS hierarchy. It is responsible for formulating the National Water Resources Plan. The plan, which provides guidelines on how the NWRP is to be applied, is itself put into operation by the National Water Agency, ANA (Agência Nacional de Aguas). The ANA is an executive branch of the Ministry of the Environment but with administrative and financial autonomy. The six national-level River Basin Committees include representatives of the federal, state and municipal governments, water users and civil society organizations. The committees promote and coordinate intersectoral actions regarding basin-related issues. The River Basin Agencies, which are still being formed, will function as the secretariats of the committees.

At state level, Rio Grande do Sul also applies the principles of access to information and a participatory approach in decision-making related to water resources. The State Water Resources System (Sistema Estadual de Recursos Hídricos), established in 1997, deals with water resources management in Rio Grande do Sul. It includes the formation of basin committees, which are involved in decision-making: one such committee deals with the Lake Merín basin and São Gonçalo channel. The system also requires the state to report regularly on the quantity and quality of freshwater resources.

Country Profile: Water Sector Coordination

See Sector coordination sub-page for detailed description

Country Profile: Trends in Water Use, Management and Sanitation

Country Profile: Challenges and Opportunities


Recently updated articles on Brazil
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See the complete list of WaterWiki articles on Brazil

Projects and Case Studies

Projects in or about Brazil

(this is a list of the 15 most recently updated entries. To see all projects click here)

  1. Removal of Barriers to the Introduction of Cleaner Artisanal Gold Mining and Extraction Technologies ‎(3,951 views) . . Katy.norman
  2. Building Partnerships to Assist Developing Countries to Reduce the Transfer fo Harmful Aquatic Organisms in Ship's Ballast Water (GloBallast Partnerships) ‎(5,607 views) . . Katy.norman
  3. Water Sector Modernisation Programme, Brazil ‎(2,044 views) . . WikiBot

Case studies in or about Brazil

(by popularity)

  1. Facing Water Challenges in Lake Merin:A WWDR3 Case Study ‎(9,926 views) . . WikiBot
  2. Facing Water Challenges in La Plata Water Basin:A WWDR3 Case Study ‎(9,756 views) . . WikiBot
  3. Community Involvement in La Plata River Basin ‎(8,574 views) . . WikiBot

See the complete list of WaterWiki documented projects in Brazil


5 most recently updated publications on Brazil
  1. The Political Economy of Sanitation: How can we increase investment and improve service for the poor? ‎(915 views) . . Katy.norman
  2. Saõ Francisco Water Transfer ‎(1,513 views) . . WikiBot
  3. Access to Water Supply and Sanitation in Brazil: Historical and Current Reflections; Future Perspectives ‎(2,664 views) . . WikiBot

5 most popular publications on Brazil
  1. Access to Water Supply and Sanitation in Brazil: Historical and Current Reflections; Future Perspectives ‎(2,664 views) . . WikiBot
  2. Saõ Francisco Water Transfer ‎(1,513 views) . . WikiBot
  3. The Political Economy of Sanitation: How can we increase investment and improve service for the poor? ‎(915 views) . . Katy.norman

See the complete list of WaterWiki documented publications on Brazil

Who is Who

People working in Brazil

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See the complete list of Waterwiki users working in Brazil

Organizations working in Brazil
  1. Intergovernmental Coordinating Committee of La Plata Basin Countries ‎(2,315 views) . . WikiBot
  2. Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization ‎(2,285 views) . . WikiBot

See the complete list of WaterWiki documented organizations in Brazil


See also

External Resources

"Water Supply and Sanitation in Brazil" on wikipedia

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