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Environmental, Licensing: Bill on New Licensing Proceedings is Approved by Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies 

Published: May, 2021

Submission: May, 2021


The Brazilian Chamber of Deputies approved the Bill 3729/2004, which brings new rules for the federal environmental licensing proceedings.

On May 13th, 2021, the Brazilian Chamber of Deputies approved the Bill 3729/2004 (“Bill”), which brings new rules for the federal environmental licensing proceedings. 


The Bill, whose rapporteur is the Deputy Neri Geller, has been in course at the Chamber of Deputies for 17 years and had its voting done as a matter of urgency, for being considered as of relevant and pressing national interest. 


The Bill’s main goal is the creation of the General Law on Environmental Licensing, which simplifies the proceedings. Its content has been under debate with regards to some specific points, among which we highlight:


(i) Listing of new activities for which environmental licensing is not required, such as: water and sanitary sewer systems and treatment plants; solid waste sorting plants; and extensive and semi-intensive cattle breeding. 


(ii) Creation of the Environmental License for Accession and Commitment (LAC): a simplified licensing proceeding, through the presentation, to the licensing agent, of a declaration by the entrepreneur, without any previous technical analysis of the activity or project, in some specific cases. 


(iii) Exemption of financial institutions from any environmental liability due to environmental damages eventually caused by activities or projects in which it may take part, directly or indirectly. Exemption is applicable if the activity or project is subject to environmental licensing and provided the institution has previously required the presentation of the environmental license.


The environmental licensing is of extreme relevance, once it aims at authorizing the installation, expansion and operation of activities or projects using environmental resources, effectively or potentially contaminating. 


All the highlights presented to the Bill by the opposition parties, trying to modify its content, were rejected. 


After the approval by the Chamber of Deputies, the Bill was forwarded to the Federal Senate where it will be analyzed and voted. In case it is subject to modifications, it will be sent back to the Chamber of Deputies. If approved, it will be sent to presidential sanction.


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