chapter  4
23 Pages

Alternative Energy Technologies in Brazil

WithJosé M. Miccolis

Brazil occupies a vast region in which solar energy is conveniently available. It is imperative that Brazil consider alternative energy production and conservation techniques in order to cope with one of the most demanding crises of its modern history: the so-called "energy crisis." To mention just one of the most serious consequences of the current situation, Brazil imports about 650,000 barrels of petroleum per day, which accounts for more than 78 percent of total consumption, at an annual cost of more than 3 billion dollars. Brazil's waterpower resources are among the greatest in the world, with an estimated potential output equivalent to that of 4.5 million barrels of oil per day. Electricity consumption in Brazil has grown in the period from 1968 to 1975 at an average annual rate of 11.8 percent. The electricity generating capacity, over the same period, has increased at an average annual rate of 12 percent.