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09 September 2013
The discharge of any waste substances into watercourses - whether liquid or gaseous - with the purpose of dilution, transport or disposal is subject to a grant under Federal Law 9433/97.
National Water Resources Council Resolution 16/2001 sets forth that the granting of the right to use water for industrial discharge will be given in relation to the amount of water needed to dilute the pollutant load, which can vary over the timetable of the grant, and will be based on the standards of water quality corresponding to the class of the receiving watercourse and specific criteria defined either in the relevant water resources plan or by relevant agencies.
At federal level, Brazilian Council for the Environment Resolution 357/2005 sets forth the conditions and standards for discharge of wastewater with which parties must comply. At state level, different requirements may apply to the discharge of industrial wastewater. For instance, in the state of Rio de Janeiro, it is mandatory that the discharge of industrial wastewater is performed upstream of the point of collection. This rule was implemented with the aim of ensuring that all precautions are taken into account by the industry, since it will be recapturing its own diluted wastewater.
An earlier version of this update first appeared in Latin Lawyer.
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Maria Alice Doria