ارزیابی زیست محیطی جهت برنامه ریزی استراتژیک بلند مدت - مورد از بخش برق برزیل
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|27494||2001||13 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||محاسبه نشده|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Ecological Economics, Volume 37, Issue 1, 1 April 2001, Pages 39–51
If not properly dealt with over compatible horizons, environmental issues may cause ventures to incur higher costs and extend over longer implementation periods. Prompted by the uncertainties and risks inherent in these issues, as well as by the need for long-term plans to incorporate sustainable development principles, the Brazilian Power Sector is encouraging the inclusion of environmental aspects as a decision variable right from the start of the planning cycle. The purpose of this paper is to bolster efforts to include in this sector's expansion plans, costs resulting from environmental degradation of the environment. The paper offers an overview of the methodology developed to assess and include in long-term planning for this sector, external environmental costs linked to hydro-power and thermo-power generation. It suggests the use of environmental economic valuation techniques — a practice commonly used to analyze the degradation of natural capital in various countries — as well as assessing projects and programs, adopting the premises and simplifications required for application over the longer term.
The Productive Sector plays an important role in the quest for sustainability. Eco-efficient production is becoming a reality among enterprises in the developed countries, whereby enterprises join forces to maximize their combined economic and environmental results, aimed at the adoption of “cleaner” production processes and technologies, while at the same time maintaining their aggregate productivity. Nevertheless, it is still rare for major enterprises — particularly those in the Public Power Sector in developing nations — to engage in these environmental assessments in the initial phase of setting priorities in their action plans. This was equally true in Brazil, until recently. When specific projects and programs do include environment variables — through quantification of environmental impacts — it has been shown by experience that they are added at a very advanced phase in the planning cycle, thereby failing to ensure that the most sustainable projects are implemented. Within this context, there is a worldwide trend to expand the concepts and procedures involved in the Environmental Impact Assessment of projects in order to assess their policies, plans and programs, placing environmental issues at the same level as other parameters — economic, financial, technological, market demands, etc. Keenly aware of this requirement and in step with worldwide trends, the Environmental Division of Brazilian Power Utility — ELETROBRÁS, is striving to include social and environmental variables in its strategic long-term plans, thereby guaranteeing the inclusion of the principles of sustainable development when planning its expansion activities. The Brazilian Power Sector undertakes its planning through a series of studies based on long-term analyses covered by the Brazilian National Electric Power Plan (NEPP). This plan analyzes prospects for development of the electric power market over a 30-year horizon, as well as the availability of primary power generation sources, and trends in technological developments. Based on strategies defined by NEPP, a medium-term plan is drawn up with a 15-year horizon, which is then reviewed on an annual basis during the preparation of the 10-year expansion plans for the sector. In this ongoing structured planning process, expansion strategies are systematically re-assessed and the alternatives reviewed until a decision is reached on venture implementation. Within this cycle, decisions are based on energy production cost/benefit analysis, while environmental issues are only included when the actions related to a specific project are considered. An exception to this rule is the planning cycle for hydro-power plants, where a methodology has been developed and adopted for considering environmental impacts in the initial stage of the planning process, based on inventory studies of hydrographic basins (CEPEL/PPE/COPPE/UFRJ, 1997), working towards maximizing energy and economic efficiency while minimizing environmental impacts. As a matter of fact, with the exception of degradation costs, all environmental costs incurred through the implementation of the venture are generally already included in the energy cost/benefit ratings by the sector during its long-term planning. The study undertaken by the Power Sector Coordination Committee for Environmental Activities (COMASE) proposes a social and environmental cost concept tailored to the characteristics of the Brazilian Power Sector, with tools and mechanisms to include these costs in the budget. In turn, this helps to include environmental variables in the long-term planning for this sector. The characteristics of the environmental costs defined for this sector are presented below (ELETROBRÁS/COMASE, 1994): • Control costs are costs incurred by the Power Sector to avoid the total or partial occurrence of social and environmental impacts of a venture. • Mitigation costs are costs incurred by the Power Sector through actions to reduce the consequences of social and environmental impacts caused by a venture. • Compensation costs are costs incurred by the Power Sector through actions which offset social and environmental impacts caused by a venture in situations where reparation is impossible. • Monitoring costs are costs incurred by the Power Sector through monitoring and evaluating social and environmental programs. • Institutional costs are costs incurred by the Power Sector in drawing up the social and environmental studies covering the planning, implementation and operations stages; preparing the studies required by the environmental agencies, and; obtaining environmental licenses. • Degradation costs are external costs caused by residual social and environmental impacts, even after the Power Sector has incurred control, mitigation and/or compensation costs. They correspond to social and environmental external costs, in other words the negative results caused by power generation that are not defrayed by power generation utilities but are rather charged to third parties, due to the lack of any voluntary action. In view of the difficulties intrinsic to the nature of degradation costs, these have not yet been included in the Accounts Plan of the Brazilian Power Sector. However, their identification and valuation would allow the monetary value of these external costs to be included in the energy cost/benefit rates (US$/MWh). These procedures would avoid the risk that energy and economic criteria are given more importance than environmental criteria when analyzing alternatives for ventures in the long-term power plan during the selection process. Environmental ratings may not be sufficient for planners to opt for alternatives that maximize economic and energy efficiency while also minimizing environmental impacts. Within this context, the inclusion of a monetary value assigned to external factors in the energy cost/benefit ratings (US$/MWh) could be an effective procedure. This could provide the feasibility for ventures with a reduced impact on the environment, and/or assigning them higher priority, either of which would encourage the selection of ventures maximizing energy and economic criteria while also minimizing environmental impacts. This paper presents an overview of the methodological proposals and the respective assumptions and simplifications presented to the Brazilian Power Sector, in order for its long-term planning1 to include the monetary value of the potential degradation costs deriving from thermo- and hydro-power generation ventures. For this, we proposed the adoption of the existing environmental economic valuation techniques (see Freeman, 1979, Freeman, 1993, Dixon et al., 1994 and May, 1999). These techniques form part of the theoretical framework of the welfare microeconomics, and are necessary to determine the social costs and benefits when public and private investment decisions affect the well-being of society. They are usually applied when analyzing the degradation of natural capital, as well as for assessing projects and programs, when the ventures to be implemented are known, as well as their impacts and external factors. The difficulty in using these monetary valuation techniques for long-term planning lies in the fact that at this stage the enterprise characteristics are not yet known. Additionally, the large number of potential projects makes it difficult to evaluate the monetary effect of the environmental impact on them. The solution adopted to face this problem was to elaborate a typology of possible projects thereby limiting the universe of analysis options. Without a doubt, by adopting this procedure, we are in danger of over-simplifying the reality. For the moment, however, this is the most objective framework there is to evaluate alternative ventures. ‘It is better to work to improve existing and operational cost–benefit frameworks until viable alternatives are developed’ (Bucher and Huszar, 1996).
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This work is the first step towards the internalization of external environmental factors caused by power generation projects in the long-term planning of the Brazilian Power Sector. This analysis is intended to provide inputs for the inclusion of environmental degradation costs (as defined by ELETROBRÁS/COMASE, 1994) in the long-term planning of the Brazilian Power Sector. The non-inclusion of these costs may result in incorrect allocation of resources. It may also be included by the power sector in countries where they used to do long-term planning with sufficient data for playing the analysis cost-effectiveness and by sectors with similar technical and environmental features. Therefore, the valuation of externalities caused by the future ventures in the strategic planning of the Power Sector will contribute to achieving sustainability. This will especially be the case if it is integrated with other techniques like geographic information systems (GIS).5 As noted, the attempt to introduce environmental variables into this process requires the adoption of methodological simplifications and the streamlining of impacts due to the generalized framework of long-term planning. Within this context, and despite the importance of assigning monetary values to environmental externalities in order to ensure that environmental variables are properly dealt with during the planning stage and the decision process in this sector, some criticisms may be addressed to the application of the methods proposed here for the long term, including: • In general, environmental valuation methodologies are applied to specific cases in order to identify the cost/benefit of externalities caused by anthropogenic activities, when and where the main variables affecting the results are already known. Here, the adaptations of the methodological approach required for its application in the long-term planning add to the uncertainties related to assigning values to the externalities in question. A list of obstacles to monetary valuation is presented in Tolmasquim (1995). • In long-term planning, there is the concept of the variables that will influence externalities, but the exact scope of their impact and magnitude is not known. It is thus necessary to make some estimates which, added to the uncertainty inherent in planning, could make the results of environmental planning seem somewhat untrustworthy to skeptics. It is important to stress that, despite these uncertainties, these valuations provide inputs that help shape decisions which ensure that environmental variables are not considered as nil. • Given the uncertainties involved in both venture location and specific impacts, in which both the venture benefit–cost framework and the site-specific nature of the physical and social effects are not exactly known, the adoption of these techniques in the strategic planing context of the power sector must be followed by a sensitive analysis of the probability of external costs exceeding the net economic benefits of the venture. This is presented by Bucher and Huszar (1996) in their response to David Barkin (1996) ‘a benefit–cost analysis should include both internal and external benefits costs of the project…, as in the meantime this is the most objective framework to evaluate the alternative ventures…’ In the case of the power sector it is usually part of the plan which yielded macro-economic benefits, and the analyst should consider this. These criticisms do not invalidate the application of methods aimed at linking the assignment of a value for environmental resources to the well-being of those affected by these ventures, for inclusion in factors for decision analysis. The criticisms merely highlight that the results obtained should be taken into consideration with all due precaution. In the long-term planning of the Brazilian Power Sector, we observe that inserting the suggested methodology — rather than ignoring or postponing the degradation cost — provides a hierarchical indication of the sustainable options of energy generation to attend to potential demand, thereby assisting the decision process. It is important to note that with the sustainability indicators — and taking the required precautions in this type of analysis — the project cost–benefit analysis allows projects to line up in a hierarchy of sustainability. Despite the methodological limitations, it is also worthwhile noting that other non-environmental economic variables taken into account during the inventory phase — engineering costs, for instance — are also subject to the same type of constraints, which are intrinsic to long-term planning. Furthermore, it is understood that the application of the methods proposed for each of the typologies presented will allow the Brazilian Power Sector to fine-tune them over time. This being the case, the generalizations and simplification of value estimations through the proposed methodology will provide an innovative and pioneering procedure for including environmental variables in the Brazilian Power Sector Planning. Although useful, it is not the only tool to be used for the inclusion of environmental variables in long-term planning; it does represent, however, an innovative advance in this field.