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<< Back to: ICLEI e-News | issue 9, August - September 2007

Brazilian cities promoting solar energy

ICLEI Members Belo Horizonte and Porto Alegre (Brazil) are actively promoting solar energy.

Belo Horizonte - The City Council of Belo Horizonte has unanimously approved two laws that encourages the use of solar energy. Belo Horizonte has long history in using solar energy, and the laws were passed on the grounds of working towards the well-being of the population by preserving the environment and conserving energy.

The laws, which will go in effect on 1 January 2008, among other benefits, provide tax subsidies to owners of properties that use solar energy.

Porto Alegre - Though Porto Alegre was the first Brazilian city to pass legislation encouraging the use of solar energy, the law has not yet been regulated. In November 2006, the City Council aproved a law that created the “Program to Encourage the Use of Solar Energy in Buildings”, with the purpose of promoting the use and development of solar energy technologies.

Progress was made this past August 2007 during a meeting between representatives of the Secretary of Environment, architects, businesses and other interested parties to debate how to increase the use of solar energy. During the debate, it was determined that the city of São Paulo is currently making solar panels obligatory in residences with four or more bathrooms and preparing all new constructions to receive the infrastructure necessary to make the use of solar energy possible. Another interesting example studied was that of the state of Paraíba which provides a 10% tax subsidy to those who implement solar systems. Porto Alegre´s Secretary of Environment, Beto Moesch will hold a meeting in the next weeks to conclude discussions in order to implement the solar energy law.