EPA Collaboration with Brazil
Brazil’s size, large population, and high levels of economic growth and urbanization make it a priority country for U.S. environmental cooperation. EPA began formal cooperation in Brazil in 1987, with an agreement between EPA and the Sao Paulo State environmental agency, the Sao Paulo Sanitation Technology Company (CETESB). EPA works with national and local environmental agencies in Brazil to exchange information on environmental management and risk reduction in areas of mutual interest.
Explore our work with Brazil:
- Past Activities
- Learn More About Brazil
January/February 2020: EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler traveled to Brasilia and Manaus in Brazil to advance cooperation with Brazil’s Ministry of Environment and other stakeholders. Administrator Wheeler met with Brazil Minister of Environment Salles to discuss future collaboration, and signed an MOU to strengthen and coordinate efforts to effectively protect our nations’ environments.
Administrator Wheeler also met with senior officials from Brazil’s National Water Agency to review current collaboration on water quality, restoration, protection, and potential future partnership activities. With this trip, Administrator Wheeler became the first EPA Administrator to visit the Amazon.
Water Quality Improvement
EPA is working with Brazil’s National Water Agency (ANA) to build capacity on water quality management, in partnership with the US Geological Survey (USGS) under an interagency agreement on Brazil Water Quality. The activities under the agreement include:
- Quarterly webinars on how U.S. approaches might be applied in Brazil for priority water quality issues, covering topics including: Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)/Impaired Waters Issues; and Water Quality Assessments, Indicators, and Communication with the Public.
- Briefings and site visits for ANA experts on cross-jurisdictional water quality management, TMDL development and implementation, water modeling and other issues, as part of an ANA Study Tour to EPA Regions 3, 4 and 8 (Annapolis, Atlanta, and Denver) in May 2019.
- Further assessment of ANA’s water quality programs, including EPA participation with USGS in a mission to Brazil, followed by in-country training in Brazil scheduled for 2020.
Embassy Science Fellowships
The Embassy Science Fellows Program, led by the U.S. Department of State, provides U.S. embassies access to the expertise of U.S. government officers in science and technology fields. EPA worked with the State Department to develop programs for two Embassy Science Fellows (ESF) working on assignments with the Brazilian Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources (IBAMA).
- During the first ESF assignment (October-December 2016), an EPA mining enforcement expert worked with IBAMA to build their capacity on regulatory mining issues.
- A second EPA technical expert with a focus on chemical accident prevention assisted IBAMA in pursuing regulatory best-practices for chemical accident prevention from January- March 2018.
MOU to Protect the Environment while Promoting Economic Growth and Social Development
As an outcome of the June 2015 meeting between then-President Obama and then-Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, the EPA Administrator and Brazilian Minister of Environment launched a new work plan under the EPA-MMA Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to protect the environment while promoting economic growth and social development. EPA and MMA began collaboration with policy dialogues and technical webinars on water quality topics. While this MOU expired in 2017, our collaboration with Brazil continues.
Follow Up to the Joint Initiative on Urban Sustainability (JIUS)
Technical support to the ReciclAção project
In July 2013, EPA partnered with the City of Rio’s Pereira Passos Institute (IPP) to host a workshop to share approaches and tools for participatory solid waste management in underserved areas. This work led to technical support to the ReciclAção project, a public-private partnership to reduce environmental risk by collecting recyclable materials in the community and using the revenue from their sale to implement environmental improvements in the community and environmental education programs. Support included development of a 2015 interactive seminar for exchange between the ReciclAção recycling partnership and the North Philadelphia Village of Arts and Humanities (VAH).
EPA also facilitated and participated in a seminar in Rio de Janeiro to help ReciclAção train local leaders from other communities to advance community-based recycling projects in Brazil, including the development of a roadmap to reapply the ReciclAção methodology based on EPA’s Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) program. (View the Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) Roadmap - 10-Step Plan to Improve Community Environment and Health.)
Guanabara Bay-Chesapeake Bay partnership
In December 2013, former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley and former Rio de Janeiro Governor Sergio Cabral launched a partnership to share best practices Exit for keeping the iconic bays in both states – the Guanabara in Rio and the Chesapeake in Maryland – clean, healthy and sustainable. EPA has helped facilitate and support this partnership, including a July 2013 study tour to exchange ideas for protecting the Chesapeake and Guanabara Bays. Exit
In July 2014, EPA and a delegation of officials and experts from Maryland traveled to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to participate in a Workshop on Governance Structures to Enhance the Restoration of Guanabara Bay. Exit The purpose of this workshop was to launch an outreach process with various local stakeholder groups and solicit their ideas on governance structures for Guanabara Bay. The workshop used lessons learned from the Chesapeake Bay governance model to enrich the discussions.
Agreements and Relevant Documents
The following links exit the site Exit
- Brazil Ministry of Environment (MMA)
- Brazilian National Water Agency (ANA)
- Environmental Agency for the State of Sao Paulo (CETESB)
- State of Rio
- City of Rio