By Xiu Ying, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The state government of Rio de Janeiro has pledged to transfer R$10 (US$2.5) million per month from May to December this year to the Environmental Sanitation Program of the Municipalities around Baía de Guanabara (Psam).
This as a result of a lawsuit endorsed by prosecutor Rosani da Cunha Gomes 12 years ago, against the state government and the State Water and Sewerage Company (Cedae).
According to the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Rio de Janeiro (MPRJ), which attended the hearing held on Thursday, May ninth, in the 13th Treasury Court, in addition to the R$26 million already allocated this year, the total transfer proposed by the defendants to clean up Guanabara Bay will total R$106 million in 2019.
“The sum represents an advancement for Psam, as in 2017, the resource stipulated for the program had also been R$106 million, although only R$10 million were effectively paid. In 2018, the sum spent on works reached R$23 million,” the MPRJ said in a statement.
The depollution of Baía de Guanabara is a problem that has been dragging on for decades in the city and has been targeted by government programs since 1995 when the Baía de Guanabara Depollution Program (PDBG) was launched.
By 2005, the program had absorbed US$940 million, according to the State Court of Auditors, generating countless disputes as it had never been completed.
During the Olympics, a new program was launched, again unsuccessfully, after the entrepreneur Eike Batista, who had committed himself to finance the cleanup, experienced financial difficulties with the downfall of some of his companies.