Thursday, 24 January 2008

Simplified/condominial sewerage − 2

My colleague Professor Cícero de Andrade Neto, of the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte in northeast Brazil, has kindly sent me up-to-date info. on monthly charges for simplified sewerage. In Rio Grande do Norte (where simplified sewerage was first installed in Natal, the state capital, in the early 1980s) the minimum water tariff is currently BRL 18.10 (USD 10.00) per month and the surcharge for simplified sewerage 35% (it’s 70% for conventional sewerage), so the monthly charge for simplified sewerage is BRL 6.34 (USD 3.50). The minimum wage (what Brazilians call ‘one minimum salary’) is BRL 380 (USD 210), thus the charge for simplified sewerage is only 1.7% of the minimum wage − clearly affordable. For poor households in ‘popular’ housing the charges are lower as they pay a reduced minimum water tariff of BRL 11.51 (USD 6.36), and for very poor households in ‘social’ housing it’s even cheaper: they pay a minimum water tariff of only BRL 3.65 (USD 2.02). [Exchange rate on 23 January from]