The Washington Post/AP, 01/15/2013
Recent rains have brought some relief to the depleted reservoirs of Brazil’s hydroelectric plants but have done little to dispel concerns over the country’s ability to fulfill its energy demands for the year.
A hotter than usual summer and lack of rain have caused water levels at hydroelectric dams in most of the country to drop to a third of their capacity. The levels are similar to those registered in 2001, when rationing was imposed and blackouts occurred.
The government has said Brazil will not resort to energy rationing because the country has thermal power plants that can be activated.
Milagros Salazar – IPS, 03/05/2012
Pakitzapango Gorge on the Ene river, homeland of the Ashaninka people and the site of a projected new dam. Credit: Courtesy of CARE
Brazil is keen to move ahead quickly with the construction of hydropower plants in neighbouring countries to supply its demand for electricity. But Peru is still stalling on an agreement between the two countries, due to a number of conflicting interests and demands.
After seven months in office, Peruvian President Ollanta Humala has not yet decided what to do with the energy agreement signed by his predecessor Alan García (2006-2011) in June 2010 with former Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (2003-2010), to great fanfare.
Furthermore, the agreement has yet to be ratified by the Peruvian Congress.