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Round of tenders for oil exploitation of the Amazon coast in Brazil

In the city of Rio de Janeiro, the 16th bidding round was held in concession for the exploration and production of oil and natural gas in five sedimentary basins in the waters of the South American giant.

Pump installed in an oil drilling

Pump installed in an oil drilling. / Photo: Pixabay - Reference Image

LatinAmerican Post | Alberto Castaño Camacho

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The National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP) offered 36 blocks in the Camamu-Almada, Jacuípe, Pernambuco-Paraíba, Campos and Santos basins. The director of the ANP, Decio Oddone, said at the beginning of the round that "we expect to see the most competitive auction of all, we will have the biggest dispute between the companies for some blocks, mainly for Campos and Santos. "

Multinationals such as ExxonMobil, Chevron and Shell, and Brazilians such as Petrobras and Enauta Energía are just some of the 17 companies that participated in the auction for the 36 blocks offered, according to the Brazilian Agency.

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Economic results

The Minister of Mines and Energy of Brazil, Bento Albuquerque, said that "the result of the auction exceeded all expectations that the government had", because although only one third of the blocks that were taken up for auction were acquired, the Buying companies ended up disbursing almost triple the minimum stipulated by the ANP.

The minimum subscription bonus for all areas was valued at USD $ 780 million and the result of the auction was close to exceeding the USD $ 2.2 billion barriers.

One of the consortiums that submitted to the auction made up of the French group Total, QPI of Qatar and the Malaysian company Petronas, made the largest offer, about USD $ 970 million, about 50% of the auctioned by the ANP.

It is expected that the next rounds, on November 6 and 7 of this year, will be, in the same way, a success for the ANP and a hard blow for groups of environmentalists who tend to protect strategic ecosystems against the largest jungle of the world.

In the penultimate month of the year, more blocks will be offered, this time, in the Presal region, blocks located in deep waters where a gigantic potential for hydrocarbon extraction, both oil and natural gas, is expected, which opens the expectation of the largest companies in the fossil fuel sector in the world.

Environmental risks

For his part, Paulinne Giffhorn of the 350 organization, said that “The initiative of the Brazilian government relies even more on an unsustainable and dirty economic growth model, which harms not only the environment but the entire population that depends on activities such as tourism and traditional subsistence fishing. ”

One of the great concerns that arise with the offer of these blocks for oil exploitation on the Brazilian coasts is the threat to protected areas, such as the Abrolhos National Marine Park, which has the highest marine biodiversity in the South Atlantic and is known worldwide for being the birthplace of humpback whales that will undoubtedly be affected by extractive activity.

According to the Environmental Sensitivity Letters of the Oil Spill of the Brazilian Ministry of Environment, on a scale of 1 to 10, the area between the coasts in front of the cities of Salvador and Ilhéus, in the state of Bahia, is classified as in level 9.

Faced with questions about the environmental risk involved in the exploitation of fossil fuels in areas as sensitive as Camamu-Almada and Jacuípe, Decio Oddone, admitted that “I recognize that the risk is greater, in addition to the geological risk, there is the environmental problem, but This is a question that companies are used to solving. And the history of Brazil is that having a well-done and comprehensive environmental impact report, we don't believe there is a problem. ”

For his part, Nicole Figueiredo de Oliveira, director of the mobilization for 350.org, said that “the Brazilian government continues to do great harm to its own citizens and the world population by continuing to prioritize fossil fuel projects in the Abrolhos basins and more there. The terrestrial capacity to absorb greenhouse gas emissions released by this type of activity has already been exhausted. The only way we can minimize the effects of the climate crisis is to protect our territories and commit to investing in 100% renewable, clean, fair and free energy sources. ”

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