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Cablegate: Brazil: Training by Usg Experts Brings to Life Promise Of

VZCZCXRO5779
RR RUEHRG
DE RUEHBR #2084/01 3051939
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 011939Z NOV 07
FM AMEMBASSY BRASILIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0348
RUEHUP/AMEMBASSY BUDAPEST 0174
INFO RUEHSO/AMCONSUL SAO PAULO 1113
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 5369
RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 7322

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 BRASILIA 002084

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR OES/PCI - LARRY SPERLING, FRANCES COLON AND AARON SALZBERG
DEPT FOR OES/STC - LESLIE BLANCAS
DEPT PASS TO USGS - JEAN WEAVER
DEPT PASS TO U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS, VICKSBURG - STEVE
COLLINGWORTH AND CARY TALBOT
DEPT PASS TO SOUTHCOM - MARCELO SALLES
BUDAPEST FOR SAM KOTIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SENV KSCA BR
SUBJECT: BRAZIL: TRAINING BY USG EXPERTS BRINGS TO LIFE PROMISE OF
COOPERATION IN AREA OF WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT

REF: 2006 BRASILIA 2286

1. (U) THIS CABLE IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED AND NOT FOR
INTERNET DISTRIBUTION.

2. (SBU) SUMMARY. Seminars put on in mid-October by U.S. water
resource management experts have served to implement recommendations
developed by the bilateral water technical working group created
under the Common Agenda for the Environment (CAE). On October 9-12,
U.S. Army Corps of Engineer (USACE) Research Hydraulic Engineer Cary
Talbot led a well-received seminar in Brasilia on advance techniques
in modeling of water resources with Brazilian counterparts; while in
Rio de Janeiro October 15-19, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
hydrologist Arthur Horowitz presented a seminar on water quality and
sediment monitoring to state and local authorities. The Brazilian
technical experts were very receptive and sought additional
technical cooperation. Particularly noteworthy is that the Ministry
of Exterior Relations (MRE), which oversees the CAE process for
Brazil, was briefed about and pleased with this technical
cooperation, even going so far as to send officials to attend the
all-day Brasilia seminar. END SUMMARY.

3. (SBU) The USG and the Government of Brazil (GOB) decided at the
December 13, 2006 Common Agenda for the Environment (CAE) meeting
(REFTEL) to establish working groups to advance technical
cooperation. A water technical working group was created and at a
July 2007 digital video conference USG and GOB technical experts
identified priority areas of interest for possible cooperation.
Based on those priorities, the State Department located and funded
two USG technical experts to go to Brazil and provide training for
Brazilian counterparts on water resource management. Beforehand,
the Embassy's Environment, Science, Technology and Health (ESTH)
Counselor and ESTH Officer briefed the Ministry of Exterior
Relations' (MRE) Chief of the Division on the Environment Counselor
Fernando Coimbra and his staff about the upcoming visits and invited
their support and participation. Coimbra appreciated the technical
assistance and the advance notice. He sent two of his officers -
Pedro Cabral de Andrade and Maite de Souza Schmitz- to attend the
seminar in Brasilia, who indicated to ESTH Officer that they were
pleased with the technical assistance provided.

USACE TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE

4. (SBU) At the July digital video conference, the GOB identified
groundwater modeling as a priority area for possible technical
cooperation. Accordingly, OES arranged for U.S. Army Corps of
Engineer (USACE) Research Hydraulic Engineer Cary Talbot to go to
Brasilia, October 9-12. A highlight of Talbot's trip was the
October 10 technical level groundwater modeling seminar hosted by
Brazil's national water authority (ANA - Agencia Nacional das Aguas)
where Talbot demonstrated computer groundwater modeling software
used by the USACE. Seminar participants expressed strong interest
in receiving training for the software with an eye toward future
collaborative water management projects, including implementation of
Brazil's national water resource management plan.

5. (SBU) Talbot met with Brazilian groundwater modeling experts and
presented his experience and in depth knowledge of the capabilities
and application of the Department of Defense Groundwater Modeling
System (GMS) software during the seminar hosted by ANA. The seminar
was well-received and attended by upwards of 25 GOB officials from
ANA, the Ministry of Environment (MMA), and from MRE.

6. (U) Seminar discussions identified several areas for potential
future collaboration with USACE, including: 1) groundwater modeling;
2) hydrologic modeling; and 3) reservoir operations and multiple use
applications. Participants said that they would benefit from
training on the GMS software and thought that it would be useful in
the implementation of Brazil's national water resources management
plan. (NOTE: Talbot explained that so long as USACE and the GOB are
working collaboratively on a specific project, the GOB should be use
the software without any proprietary limitations. END NOTE).

7. (SBU) In addition to participation in the seminar, Talbot also
reached out to state level water experts and enrolled the assistance
of SOUTHCOM to support future collaboration between USACE and the
GOB. During a meeting at the embassy's Military Liaison Office, COL
Mitch Butikofer pointed out that Talbot's visit reinforced the visit
the week before by USACE Chief Van Antwerp (SEPTEL) and that

BRASILIA 00002084 002 OF 003


SOUTHCOM may be able to provide financial assistance to support the
Corps' interest in technical level cooperation and exchange. Talbot
also met with Diaogenes Mortari, the Superintendent of Grants of the
Federal District of Brazil Water Authority (ADASA) and two of his
staff to discuss groundwater modeling. (NOTE: Under current
Brazilian law, groundwater resources are within the jurisdiction of
the individual states of which the Federal District is in similar
fashion to the District of Columbia in the United States. Even so,
individual states follow the lead of ANA with regard to the approach
and tools used in groundwater projects. END NOTE). Mortari
expressed interest in learning more about the use of GMS for their
groundwater projects.

USGS TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE

8. (U) The July video conference also identified water quality and
sediment monitoring as a priority area for technical cooperation.
To this end, OES sent U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) hydrologist
Arthur Horowitz to Rio de Janeiro October 15-19 to present a seminar
on water quality and sediment monitoring to state and local
authorities. The seminar was hosted by the Brazilian Geological
Survey, known as CPRM (Companhia de Pesquisa de Recursos Mine -
Mineral Research Company) and attended by government, university,
and private sector (consultancy and power generation companies)
representatives. Discussions included potential cooperation between
CPRM and USGS in the areas of training and technical assistance.

9. (SBU) Horowitz suggested that the cooperative projects for
technology transfer and exchange of experiences could be developed
on a peer to peer basis between the individuals involved with these
issues at both organizations. (NOTE: USGS' collaboration with
Brazilian interlocutors is not new. USGS has been collaborating
with the Institute of Hydraulic Research at the Federal University
of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS) since 2004. Moreover, USGS has also
presented at two seminars hosted by UFRGS, one March 19-25 2006 and
the other November 13-17, 2006. Both seminars also focused on water
quality and sediment monitoring. END NOTE).

10. (SBU) CPRM representatives indicated that they are interested
in collaboration with USGS in the following areas: 1) fluvial
sediment analysis; 2) water and sediment laboratory
quality-assurance; 3) non-point source water pollution assessment;
4) design and planning the operation of monitoring networks; 5) use
of equipment (ADCP, HADCP), techniques (remote sensing) and software
applied to hydrologic measurements; 6) flood and drought
forecasting; 7) modeling ground-water flow; 8) digital geographic
data-base oriented to water resources assessment; and 9) research on
physical processes controlling the distribution and quality of
surface-water. CPRM is also interested in obtaining and using
modernized sampling/measuring equipment.

NEXT STEPS

11. (SBU) ANA and MMA officials are interested in pursuing
collaboration with USACE and to adopting USACE tools, standards and
practices in groundwater modeling. Post understands that Talbot
plans to recommend to USACE that formal collaboration be pursued
with the ANA as part of USACE's mission and goals for international
affairs. In addition, ANA, USACE and Post will jointly develop a
post-exchange report identifying possible concrete next steps for
formalizing the cooperation. At this point, it looks as though the
first step of collaboration may be a technical training course in
Brazil on the application of the GMS software to be administered by
USACE (with possible MLO funding for travel/per diem costs).

12. (SBU) CPRM and USGS agreed that collaborative work could start
immediately, after finding the corresponding researchers in the USGS
in each area of mutual interest.
CPRM and USGS representatives also agreed that any future technical
cooperation should be formalized under the existing Memorandum of
Understanding (MOU) between USGS and CPRM (1997). Post understands
that USGS and CPRM will discuss this latter possibility with agency
management and also seek out appropriate agency researchers. In the
meantime, communication between USGS, CPRM and UFRGS will continue
and Post stands ready to assist as necessary.

13. (SBU) Post will also continue to inform MRE on these
collaborative efforts as they relate to our bilateral relations
under the Common Agenda for the Environment.

BRASILIA 00002084 003 OF 003

COMMENT

14. (SBU) This set of seminars brings to life the vision that the
USG and GOB agreed to at the 2006 CAE of technical working groups
developing priorities and planning for cooperation, with the State
Department and the MRE stepping back and playing a supportive role.
These visits successfully jump-started CAE technical level
cooperation in the area of groundwater management. Post will now
work with ANA, MMA, MRE, CPRM, OES and USG technical agencies
(USACE, USGS and others) to further technical cooperation in this
important area. Post sees good prospects for additional, focused
technical assistance in the area of water resources management
following these visits.

15. (SBU) Perhaps as important as identifying specific areas of
technical level cooperation in groundwater modeling and water
quality/sedimentation monitoring, however, was the positive
recognition and support of the visits by MRE. In addition to
sending two diplomats to attend the seminar, Coimbra sent a letter
to the head of ANA's International Affairs Office, Raimundo Filho,
in support of the collaboration. This blessing may bode well for
future cooperation in this and other technical working group areas
contemplated under the CAE.

16. (SBU) Post thanks OES and Embassy Budapest for creating this
opportunity, and for the quick turnaround of funding and logistical
aspects of the visits.

SOBEL

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