Will bill 3,235/2019 ensure a sustainable water and sanitation universalization in Brazil? A historical perspective of the water and sanitation governance in Brazil

By Jennifer Jacobowitz Rae


The access to water and sanitation is a human right that has been discussed  internationally since the 1970s. However, it has always been linked to the right to life,  health, adequate housing, adequate food, and working conditions; a list that can certainly be extended as water takes part in most components of human life. It was only in 2010, however, through Resolution A/RES/64/292, that the UN formally recognized the human right to water and sanitation and further recognized its essentiality for the realization of all other human rights. The resolution calls upon governments and international organizations to provide financial resources, contribute to capacity building and transfer technologies to help countries to ensure safe, clean and accessible drinking water at reasonable costs and sanitation for all. 

Numerous investments in water and sanitation infrastructure and services are needed to ensure access to universalization. Countries, states, and municipalities are not always able to do this on their own, requiring financial inputs from other investors, i.e. the private  sector. Thus, the establishment of an appropriate governance model and effective regulation of the sector is essential to ensure its attractiveness to investors, who can help – in many ways – make universal access, social equity and the efficiency of water and sanitation services viable.

Continue reading “Will bill 3,235/2019 ensure a sustainable water and sanitation universalization in Brazil? A historical perspective of the water and sanitation governance in Brazil”

Dry mining in Brazil: A cost-benefit analysis after the tragedies of Mariana and Brumadinho

By Pedro Gagliardi

[24 min read]


This paper examines the costs and benefits of dry processing and/or dry stacking as alternative production methods for the current mining operations in Brazil. Both methods prevent the formation of tailings dams, which are created as a result of the extraction of iron ore. This paper carries out a cost-benefit analysis which tries – firstly – to quantify the benefits for society of avoiding tailings dam collapses like Marina in 2015 and Brumadinho, in 2019, and – secondly – estimate the cost related to investing in dry processing methods for mining; the changes in production costs; and the cost of decommissioning current tailing dams.

Continue reading “Dry mining in Brazil: A cost-benefit analysis after the tragedies of Mariana and Brumadinho”

Brazil’s Complicated Relationship with Money

By Nathaniel Archer Lawrence

[5 min read]

When I tell Brazilians I teach financial education, nearly without fail their first response is, “Oh, I need that.”

Brazil finds itself almost a decade into an existential economic crisis[1]. The “social-democratic” darling of BRIC countries in 2010, Brazil has spent the better part of this decade suffering. From the deepest recession in a century to unending political corruption scandals, Brazilians were unprepared for such a financial challenge. This is exactly what financial education strives to correct – at least, on paper – and what Brazil needs. Continue reading “Brazil’s Complicated Relationship with Money”

Game of Thrones and Climate Change: Brace yourselves, Summer is Coming!

By Cassia Moraes

[8 min read]

Imagine a world where different political clans fight for increasing their power while ignoring a threat never seen before – and which can annihilate their societies without much consideration for man-made boundaries. The narrative above could be an introduction for the eighth and final season of Game of Thrones, to be released soon, in which the fate of Westeros will be sealed as the army of the dead finally make its way through “The Wall”. It could also be an accurate description of the current state of world politics, where names such as Donald Trump and Jair Bolsonaro wage a war against multilateralism at the moment which we needed it the most. Political distractions as billionaire walls and celebration of past dictatorships occupy their agenda while the real – and potentially irreversible – threats posed by climate change are already in our backyards.

While in HBO’s show the Great Houses fail in addressing the major danger Westeros has ever faced, in real life the scenario is not much different. Those who have historically been the main contributors to climate change do not take the proper actions to offset their actions. In turn, emerging countries like Brazil and China, today’s major emitter of greenhouse gas, use the poor response from developed countries as an excuse to postpone their own actions. Although the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities reinforces emerging countries’ position, they will also be losers if we fail to tackle climate change as a global community. Perhaps the metaphor of white walkers makes it easier to understand why the prisoner’s dilemma strategy of maximizing individual benefits is an illusion. If Westeros lose the war against the white walkers there will be no throne for Cersei or anyone to sit in.

Continue reading “Game of Thrones and Climate Change: Brace yourselves, Summer is Coming!”

Brazil’s New Congress

By Fernando Haddad, Isadora Amaral, Paulo Speroni, and Tiago Ciarallo,  Editors and Writers of Brazil Talk

[6 min read]

On October 7th, the 2018 General Elections took place in Brazil and 117 million voters elected their legislative and executive representatives at the state and national levels. This descriptive analysis developed by the Brazil Talk team seeks to show who are the legislators and the parties that will govern the country with the future president, who will be elected in the second round on October 28th.
The electoral results for Congress mark the highest renovation since 1990 due to low levels of reelection as well as an increase in the number of parties represented in both the Senate and the House of Representatives. Although renewed in its composition, the new Congress will have a more conservative profile due to the rise of military, religious, ruralists and other segments identified with a conservative agenda and that can influence the legislative process. Despite the fact that results suggest some similar trends in both institutions, the elections had distinct impacts on the composition of the Senate and the House of Representatives. Continue reading “Brazil’s New Congress”