Water permit integration in the Paraguaçu River Watershed (Bahia)

ABSTRACT In Brazil, water regulatory agencies adopt two different methodologies of equating water balance for the purposes of water permits: one that considers the uses for surface water withdrawal and waste water discharge in an integrated way, and one that analyses these two uses as demands that do not relate with each other. In the state of Bahia, this analysis disregards the integration of quantitative and qualitative uses. Furthermore, at the moment, there are not internal procedures that enable the integration of the water permit with other water resources management instruments. In this context, the aim of this work consists of analysing the advantages and limitations of the implementation of the equating methodology that integrates the quali-quantitative analysis of the water balance for purposes of water permit, compared with current procedures in the state of Bahia. For this analysis, a diagnosis of use of the Paraguaçu River Watershed (BHRP) was developed through the Water Balance Control System (SCBH), simulating the two methodologies and comparing potential water use index. The results reinforce that the methodology of equating the quali-quantitative water balance does not represent an advance for water resources management when the other instruments, present in the State Water Resources Policy, are not integrated with the water permit.