Chapter 8. Water resources

This chapter presents the main trends in water quality, progress in achieving (ambitious) water quality objectives, the challenges ahead and the health effects of poor water quality. It discusses the regulatory framework for water resource management, including at the watershed scale. It reviews pricing and infrastructure development for water supply and sanitation. Finally, the chapter discusses the role of direct regulations and economic instruments in water management and proposes a risk-based approach to water management.

  

Key findings and recommendations

In order to reduce the growing demand for water in Peru, the National Water Plan (PNRH 2015-2035) calls for increasing the crop area under mechanised irrigation from the current 2% to 24% by the year 2035, pursuing the installation of water meters in homes, and at the same time improving the water distribution canals, reforesting upstream areas of watersheds (to avoid sedimentation in the reservoirs), and more than doubling the reuse of treated urban wastewater for irrigation. On this last point, it will be important to ban the use of untreated wastewater for irrigation, as this would pose a risk to health and the environment. Since 2010, environmental quality standards (EQS) have been established for natural watercourses. Acute diarrhoeal illnesses in children under five years have declined, thanks to efforts to improve the coverage of drinking water services. The percentage of urban wastewater that is treated has risen to 50% (by volume) and the treatment method has evolved toward the use of more advanced techniques. However, the overloading of wastewater treatment plants is such that their treated effluents frequently exceed the maximum permissible limits (MPL). The PNRH calls for proper purification of 99% of the wastewater generated by the target population (urban and rural population of the Pacific Hydrographic Region and the urban population of the Amazonas and Titicaca hydrographic regions) by 2035. The number of activities that must comply with MPLs for effluents has increased, and the National Environmental Action Plan (PLANAA Peru 2011-2021) requires that 100% of permits must comply with the MPLs by the year 2021. The introduction of progressive tariffs for higher consumption blocks provides incentives for water conservation.

Recent years have seen a significant increase in investments in wastewater treatment infrastructure, although their level has not been sufficient to reduce the environmental impacts. As an intermediate step toward the long-term goal of total cost recovery, a combination of consumption-based tariffs, public financial support and transfers from official development assistance may help to close the financing gaps and pave the way for reimbursable aid.

The new Water Resources Act (Ley de Recursos Hídricos, 2009) and the accompanying National Water Resource Management System establish multisectoral (integrated) management by watershed, an approach that was reiterated in 2012 with the State Policy on Water Resources (Policy 33). The deconcentrated bodies of the National Water Authority, which oversees the system, are determined on the basis of the watersheds. The Water Resources Act introduces user participation in decision-making and planning through the Consejos de Recursos Hídricos de Cuenca (watershed boards). To date, Peru has six such boards in place, with binding plans approved. The watershed plans must include ecological flows based on specific studies for each stretch of the river. However, the watershed boards exclude some stakeholders, such as the economic sector and non-governmental organisations.

The PNRH, which was approved in July 2015, establishes activities and targets for meeting water demand and improving water quality, and also promotes a “water culture” and adaptation to climate change. Charges for water consumption and dumping have been introduced with the entry into force of the Water Resources Act. Rates have been evolving as information on water resources becomes available: the rate for consumption varies according to water availability, reflecting the scarcity of the resource, while the rate for dumping considers the EQS, reflecting the quality of the recipient watercourse.

Recognising the growing demand for water, the deficit in the watersheds (already at 10%) and the fact that nearly 30% of aquifers are overexploited, the PNRH calls for a 50% increase (by volume) in transfers from Amazonia to the Pacific and in water reservoirs for consumption purposes, by the year 2035. Special attention will have to be paid to the possible adverse environmental effects of these transfers and reservoirs, such as alterations to aquatic ecosystems.

More than 40% of the monitored watersheds do not comply with the EQS, and it will therefore be very difficult to meet the (very ambitious) target of PLANAA Peru whereby all watercourses must be EQS-compliant by the year 2021. The main obstacles relate to improperly treated domestic wastewater, untreated dumping from informal mining activities, the increasing extraction of sand from rivers to supply the construction industry, the use of agrochemicals in intensive agriculture, and environmental liabilities that continue to pollute the adjacent rivers. Gold mining and oil production are also contributing to the decline in water quality in the Amazon hydrographic region. There are high levels of noncompliance with the EQS in the Titicaca hydrographic region. There has been no assessment of water quality monitoring in the aquifers.

In half of the 24 regions more than 30% of the population has no access to safe drinking water or sewage services. Moreover, the quality and the continuity of the water supply are often very deficient. For the year 2035, the PNRH calls for achieving total water and sewage coverage for the target population. There is no treatment of urban wastewater in nine of the 24 regions, all of them located in the Amazonas hydrographic region. The entities providing sanitation services are for the most part financially bankrupt, and are consequently subject to evaluation and recovery under the Law on Modernization of Sanitation Services (2013). The percentage of unbilled water exceeds 40%, due to leaks and apparent losses.

There is a cross-subsidy from industrial users to domestic users and from wealthy households to poor households, via the “social tariff” or rate. If the social tariff, which reduces incentives to save water, were replaced by a mechanism that would fully compensate only a portion of the poorest households’ water consumption, this would improve affordability without distorting price signals. The system of charges for consumption and dumping is designed to finance the operating costs of the National Water Authority: such an earmarking of levies for specific purposes is problematic. The base and the rate of the charge should not vary with the use made of the water but should be geared to the cost of the environmental externalities involved. No charge is levied for subterranean waters.

In many regions of Peru water security is under threat from the growing demand for water, hydric stress, and increasingly numerous sources of water pollution. In 2013 alone, 25 cases originating in 13 departments were registered with the National Tribunal for the Settlement of Water Disputes. Risks relating to water shortage, flooding and water quality need to be better managed, as does the risk of harming the resilience of water bodies. If the country adopts a vision that highlights clear management of water-related risks, it is more likely to achieve its economic, environmental and social objectives as they relate to water, without imposing excessive costs on Peruvian society.

Recommendations
  • Introduce a new risk-based approach into water resource management, including the risks of water shortages, flooding, inadequate water quality and the risk of harming the resilience of water bodies; to that end, develop a knowledge base on those four risks and strengthen participation mechanisms for all the stakeholders in defining, accepting and jointly managing risks.

  • Align the rates (fees paid) for consumption and for disposal into the environment, regardless of how the water is used, and, in this way, create appropriate incentives for adjusting consumption and promoting better irrigation techniques and facilitate compliance with maximum permissible limits and EQS. Expand the fee base for underground water.

  • Continue efforts to ensure universal access to drinking water and to improved sanitation infrastructure. Create a favourable climate for reimbursable assistance to speed up the elimination of funding shortfalls in the provision of drinking water and sanitation; to this end, implement a combination of usage fees, public financial support and official development assistance transfers, while pursuing the long-term objective of total cost recovery through consumption fees. Combat payment evasion, reduce losses on the network and evaluate the creation of incentives for the conservation of drinking water in urban areas by replacing the social rate with compensation schemes that offset a portion of the monthly consumption of that rate’s beneficiaries, following the example of Chile.

  • Expand the coverage, parameters and frequency of water quality monitoring in order to meet EQS and extend those standards to situations and areas at risk from the failure to treat wastewater, pollution from industry and mining and the intensive use of agrochemicals.

  • Continue to expand the coverage of wastewater treatment plants in line with the National Water Plan. Prohibit the reuse of untreated wastewater for irrigation, in light of the risk it poses for health and the environment.

  • Consolidate interinstitutional co-ordination forums such as the National Water Resource Management System, the board of the National Water Authority and the watershed boards, and their ties with the National Environmental Management System.

1. Diagnostic assessment of water resources 1

1.1. Availability

In Peru, farming consumes more surface water than any other activity, accounting for 87.5% of demand —ahead of human consumption (10%) and the mining and manufacturing sectors (1.5% and 1%, respectively) (MINAM, 2014). Irrigated farmland has expanded steadily over the last 50 years. In 1994-2012it grew from 1.7 million ha to 2.6 million ha, accounting for 36% of the total at the end of this period, compared to 32% in 1994. In 2012, 30% of irrigated land was fallow and not being worked, so the cultivated area totalled 1.8 million ha.

Around 10% of Peru’s watersheds (17 out of a total of 159) record an annual or monthly deficit with respect to the mean. All of these are in the Pacific hydrographic region (HR), with none in the Amazon or Titicaca regions. To compensate for the monthly deficit, there are plans under the National Water Plan (PNRH 2015-2035) to build regulation reservoirs in watersheds that have sufficient water of their own, with a canal connecting to neighbouring basins.

Eighty per cent (3 694 hm3/year) of water transfers occur between watersheds within the Pacific hydrographic region, and 20% (950 hm3/year) pass from the Amazon HR to the Pacific HR. The volume transferred within the Pacific region represents 35% of the water resources of the transferring river basins (62% of that total is subtracted from the Chira river to the Piura), compared to 4% mobilised from the Amazon HR watersheds to those of the Pacific region. The National Water Plan envisages a 50% increase in the volume of water transfers between the Amazon and Pacific hydrographic regions by 2035. As indicated in the strategic environmental assessment contained in the Plan, special attention needs to be paid to the potential negative effects of these transfers, including alteration of the ecosystem in the transferring watersheds and the transference of aquatic organisms to the recipient regions.

Peru’s reservoirs have a total capacity of 5 566 hm3, of which 80% (4 500 hm3) is intended for irrigation (consumptive use) and the remaining 20% (1 066 hm3) for hydroelectric power generation (non-consumptive use). The National Water Plan foresees an expansion of 2 266 hm3 (or 50%) in reservoir capacity for consumptive uses by 2035. A further aim is to respond to the additional demand driven by population growth and the expansion of irrigated land areas, manufacturing industry and mining, by implementing water-saving measures that enhance the efficiency of systems of water transportation, distribution and use.

Payment for water use (section 2.2) provides incentives to reduce its consumption and to mechanise irrigation. Nonetheless, data compiled in the 2010 National Household Survey (ENAHO) show that just 2% of farmland is under mechanised irrigation. One of the goals of the National Water Plan is to raise this proportion to 24% by 2035, thus postponing the target date set in the National Environmental Action Plan (PLANAA Peru, 2011-2021).2 The saving achieved by using irrigation water more efficiently could contribute to the anticipated expansion of irrigated land areas (Table 8.1).3 Greater efficiency could also reduce salinity levels in the 300 000 ha —18% of total irrigated land— that are affected to a greater or lesser degree.4

Table 8.1. Planned mechanisation of irrigated farmland
(Thousands of hectares)

Irrigated land area

 

2012

2021

2035

Total

 

1 640

2 090

2 510

Under mechanised irrigation

 

33

397

602

Percentage of total

 

2

19

24

Source: ANA (2013).

Peru’s water distribution canals have fallen into disrepair, partly because the rates charged for their use do not cover operating and maintenance costs (section 1.3). The inventory performed in 2007 by the National Institute for Natural Resources (INRENA) showed that about 85% (46 241 km) of the canals were not lined. This has resulted in water distribution losses of 15%-20%. Most of these canals are used to irrigate farmland, but some are also used to supply water to the population after the appropriate treatment. The National Water Plan sets a goal of laying concrete lining on roughly 50% of the canals that are unlined or in poor condition, by 2035.

It has been found that 12 of the 43 aquifers used in the Pacific HR are overused, and in many cases their use has been banned. Overexploitation has caused a deterioration in water quality owing to saline intrusion in the case of aquifers located near the coast, while the extraction of deep ground and mineralised water has affected inland aquifers.

The National Water Plan also aims to install water meters in homes, to regulate both the consumption and cost of drinking water. In 2012, 62% of homes connected to the networks of the water service providers (Empresas Prestadoras de Servicios de Saneamiento – EPSs) had a meter (INEI, 2014).

The Government of Peru intends to triple the country’s installed hydroelectric capacity from 3 235 MW in 2008 to over 10 000 MW by 2027. If this objective is achieved, the hydro contribution to the electricity grid will increase from 45% to 65% in the period. The majority (87%) of hydroelectric potential is located in the Amazon HR.

The large regulation reservoirs are becoming clogged ever more rapidly, owing to deforestation within the headwaters areas of watersheds caused by timber and firewood extraction, and by agricultural activity that generates high rates of sedimentation. Under the National Water Plan, there are plans to reforest 600 000 ha by 2035, preferably with native species, to protect water resources; while the National Environmental Action Plan includes the conservation of headwaters in 50% of watersheds by 2021. In the Moyobamba region, a pilot programme of payment for environmental services has been implemented. Under this programme the water supply entity has, since 2009, added a charge of one Peruvian sol (PEN 1) to the drinking water and sanitation bill. This is expected to generate revenue for a fund for reforestation activities in the upper river basin of water catchment areas. The revenue obtained constitutes seed capital, and it is hoped that regional and local governments and civil and social organisations will supplement this (Rojas-Ortuste, 2010).

The recycling of treated urban wastewater increases the availability of water for consumptive uses, other than human consumption. The National Environmental Action Plan foresees 50% of treated water being recycled by 2021, whereas the National Water Plan foresees reusing 45% (572 hm3/year) of water collected in sewerage networks by 2035 —over twice the current rate of 21% or 260 hm3/year. Most of the recycled water is destined for farmland irrigation, and to a lesser extent, manufacturing industry and mining. The demand for recycled water for irrigation is so high that it is being met with wastewater from the sewerage network that has not gone through the treatment plants, which poses a health and environmental hazard (OEFA, 2014).

The National Water Plan does not attach a high priority to the desalinisation of seawater, owing specifically to the high cost of the technology, transport and management of the brine tanks, and its reliance on energy resources. The plan stipulates that desalinisation should be considered as a last resort, after having rejected or exhausted the other possibilities.

1.2. Quality

Water quality is monitored in 98 of Peru’s 159 main watersheds (over 60%).5 In 41 of these (over 40%) the relevant environmental quality standards are not applied (ANA, 2015). The main causes of the deterioration of water quality in Peru are the lack of wastewater treatment, industrial pollution, indiscriminate use of agrochemicals, the dumping of domestic solid waste, the existence of mining and hydrocarbon liabilities, informal and illegal mining activity, and deforestation.

In Peru, domestic wastewater is inadequately treated, owing to deficient or non-existent systems (section 1.3). Wastewaters contaminate water courses by raising nutrient concentrations, and by adding organic material and microorganisms that restrict their consumptive and irrigation use. Many of the effluents from informal extractive operations are discharged into rivers without adequate or any prior treatment. This causes various problems, including pollution by metals and hydrocarbons, acidification and an increase in suspended solid particles. Increasing rates of sand and gravel extraction from river beds, to meet the needs of an expanding construction sector, are causing serious problems for stream-bed morphology and increasing the dragging of solids.

The main source of pollution stemming from intensive agriculture is the use of agrochemicals (Chapter 10). It should be noted, however, that only 11% of farms use chemical fertilisers intensively, and 30%-40% use pesticides (INEI, 2013).

In the Amazon HR, particularly in the Department of Madre de Dios, gold mining pollutes rivers with sediments, mercury, cyanide, sulphuric acid and oil. Oil extraction activities in the Pastaza, Tigre, Corrientes and Napo watersheds generate brackish water and contaminate water flows with hydrocarbons, heavy metals (Hg, Cd, Cr and Pb), cyanide and arsenics.

Many environmental liabilities resulting from extractive activities carried out long ago arise from mines having been closed without appropriate sealing measures. Over 6 500 of these liabilities have been identified, and they continue to pollute neighbouring rivers (Chapter 12).

The Environmental Quality Standards (EQS) for water, adopted in 2008 and implemented as of 2010, “constitute the objectives applicable to natural water bodies,”6 based on the current or potential use of the water body in question. They are classified in four categories:

  • Category 1: Population and recreational use. Applicable to surface waters destined for the production of drinking water and recreational use.

  • Category 2. Applicable to marine-coastal activities, such as the extraction and cultivation of molluscs and other marine species.

  • Category 3: Irrigation of plants and animal consumption.

  • Category 4: Conservation of the aquatic environment, including lakes and lagoons, rivers and marine-coastal ecosystems (marine estuaries).

Of the 292 water bodies classified, 214 correspond to category 3, 54 to category 4, and 24 to category 1. Unclassified water bodies are provisionally placed in the category into which they flow. This means that once the sources of pollution have been identified, a monitoring network can be designed and set up. Evaluations of the quality of surface water bodies performed in recent years have shown a high level of non-compliance with EQS, which will make it more difficult to achieve the target for 2021 set out in the National Environmental Action Plan, namely compliance with the standards by all water bodies.

In 2012, 30 watersheds were evaluated, of which 21 belong to the Pacific HR, four to the Amazon HR and five to the Titicaca HR (MINAM, 2014). In the first case, concentrations of iron, manganese, aluminium, pH and heat-tolerant coliforms exceeded the EQS limits. The highest levels of non-compliance were found in the Piura and Locumba (Moquegua) watersheds. The Amazon HR displayed concentrations of pH, dissolved oxygen, thermotolerant coliforms, solids in suspension, oils and fats, total nitrogen, ammoniacal nitrogen, lead and mercury, above the EQS limits. The Pastaza river basin recorded the largest number of parameters that exceeded EQS. In the Titicaca HR, many parameters did not comply, specifically those relating to pH and to oils and fats, total coliforms, thermotolerant coliforms, chemical and biochemical oxygen demand, total nitrogen, ammoniacal nitrogen, nitrates, phosphates, total solids in suspension, arsenic, aluminium, cadmium, cobalt, copper, lead, zinc, lithium, mercury, calcium, manganese, magnesium, mercury, nickel, boron, iron and sodium. The largest number of parameters above the EQS limits was detected in the Coata and Azángaro rivers. Another evaluation of the quality of surface waters, performed in July and August 2013, found a high level of non-compliance in the Chamaya and Santa rivers, owing to elevated metal concentrations (Table 8.2). Peru has a chemical monitoring network covering 47 aquifers, which consists of 5 862 control points that track levels of chlorides, sulphates, bicarbonates, calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium, but not nitrates.7

Table 8.2. Non-compliance with water quality standards (EQS)

River

Environmental quality standards

Non-compliancea

Pacific hydrographic region

Category

Number of samples that exceed the standards

Chamaya

3 (irrigation)

Aluminium (6) and manganese (3)

Jequetepeque

3 (irrigation)

pH (3)

Santa

1 (population)

Aluminium and arsenic (7), iron (6), boron (4); cadmium (3), manganese (2), nickel (1)

Pampas

3 (irrigation)

Arsenic (1)

Amazon hydrographic regionb

4 (environmental conservation)

Lead (2), pH and dissolved oxygen (1)

Note: a) Of a total of eight samples analysed. b) Rivers Amazonas, Nanay and Napo in the Iquitos area.

Source: ANA (2013).

1.3. Drinking water supply and sanitation services

The General Sanitation Services Act (Law No. 26338), promulgated in 1994, provides for the subsidiary firms of the National Water Supply and Sewerage Service to be transferred to the municipalities.8 Under this law, the sanitation service providers (EPSs) must be set up as joint-stock companies, with shares representing the equity of the municipalities in their coverage zone (Rojas-Ortuste, 2010). The only exception is the Drinking Water and Sewerage Service of Lima (SEDAPAL), which is a State-owned enterprise. There are currently 50 entities of this type operating throughout Peruvian territory; they serve over 18 million people and are supervised by the National Superintendency of Sanitation Services (SUNASS). The municipalities are required to serve the population not yet covered by EPSs. Law No. 30045 (the Sanitation Services Modernization Law), of 2013, requires EPSs to undergo evaluations and submit to bailout procedures, since most of them are insolvent.

The National Water Plan provides for the expansion of the coverage of drinking water and sanitation services in poor areas (rural zones of the Amazon and Titicaca HRs) to cover up to 85% of households by 2035, compared with current rates of 65% and 16%, respectively.

Drinking water

In 2012, 83% of households in urban areas and 52% in rural areas were connected to the public drinking water network (Table 8.3). In urban areas, 7% of households were supplied from public networks located outside the home. In rural areas, the secondary household water source (32%) consisted of rivers, irrigation canals or springs (Chapter 3).

Table 8.3. Sources of water supply for human consumption, 2012
(Percentages)

Zone

Connection to public network, inside the home

Connection to public network, outside the home but inside the building

Public standpipe

Tanker truck or similar

Well

River, irrigation ditch, spring or similar

Othera

Urban

83

7

2

2

1

1

4

Rural

52

1

2

1

6

32

6

Note: a) Includes asking for water from neighbours and other forms of water supply such as rain, melted snow, etc.

Source: MINAM (2014).

In half the country’s 24 departments, over 30% of the population did not have access to drinking water in 2011, whether through a connection to the public network or access to a public source, a borehole, pump, or protected well, or to a protected source or rainwater. In the departments of Amazonas, Loreto and Pasco, over 50% of the population has no access to drinking water, whereas in Huancavelica and Puno only half do. Moreover, the quality of the water supplied to many of the households with public-network connections is very deficient, and supply is frequently interrupted. The National Water Plan envisages coverage for the whole of the target population by 2035, which includes the inhabitants of the urban and rural areas of the Pacific HR and those of the urban areas of the Amazon and Titicaca HRs. The rural population of the latter two regions is covered by a specific programme for poverty-stricken areas.

Despite this situation, the adoption of measures to expand the coverage of drinking water services made it possible to cut the incidence of acute diarrhoeal diseases among children under five years old to around 200 000 cases in 2012, compared to between 600 000 and 700 000 cases per year in the first decade of this century. The departments with the highest incidence of diarrhoea include Loreto, Cajamarca, Cusco, Áncash, San Martin and Ica (MINAM, 2014).

The diseases caused by the poor quality of water distributed by some tanker trucks, which supplied 2% of drinking water in Peru (3.5% in Lima), calls into question the legal framework and monitoring of the quality of water distributed by such vehicles. To address the problem, local water committees, headed by women, have been set up in three districts of the eastern cone of Lima, with the aim of creating dialogue mechanisms with the authorities. This mechanism made it possible to finance community drinking water networks through the Ministry of Housing, Construction and Sanitation, and the municipalities (Páucar, 2008).

Sanitation

A large proportion of households, particularly in rural areas, still do not have a connection or access to an adequate drainage system (Table 8.4). However, the general trend is positive as the number of homes connected to the public networks has been rising. At the same time, the use of septic tanks, cesspits and other means of wastewater disposal, including rivers, irrigation ditches and canals has been declining (MINAM, 2014).

Table 8.4. Means of disposal of excreta, 2012
(Percentages)

Zone

Connection to public network, inside the home

Connection to public network, outside the home but inside the building

Septic tank

Cesspit

River, irrigation ditch or canal

Latrine

Other

None

Urban

79

7

3

4

1

2

1

3

Rural

12

1

30

17

1.5

12

0.5

26

Source: MINAM (2014).

As in the case of drinking water supply, in 2011, over 30% of the population of Peru’s 24 departments did not have access to the public sewerage network, but instead made use of drains, septic tanks, water-seal latrines, or either simple or ventilated pit latrines. In the departments of Loreto, Madre de Dios and Ucayali, over half the population still has no access to the sewerage network; and in Apurímac, Cusco and Pasco only 50% do. Haphazard population growth in the large cities has made it difficult to expand coverage; but the National Water Plan envisages increasing this to 90% before 2021, and to 100% before 2035. Rehabilitation of the existing networks is also planned.

In terms of the volume of treated urban wastewater, the coverage provided by EPSs grew from 21% in 2000 to 32% in 2012 (SINIA, 2013); and then to 50% in 2013, when the Taboada wastewater treatment plant came online benefiting 50% of the population of Lima and Callao. In general, there is a wastewater overload in the treatment plants, which have inadequate infrastructure, so the effluents treated exceed the maximum permissible limits (MPLs) (OEFA, 2014) (Table 8.5). The National Water Plan has set targets for the treatment of wastewater generated by the target population, of 60% in 2021 and 99% in 2035. It is unclear how these targets are harmonised with those set under the National Environmental Action Plan, according to which all urban wastewater and 30% of that originating in rural areas should be treated by 2021.

Table 8.5. Maximum limits for effluents processed in wastewater treatment plants

Parameter

Unita

MPL

Oils and fats

mg/l

20

Thermotolerant coliforms

MLN/100 ml

10 000

Biochemical oxygen demand

mg/l

100

Chemical oxygen demand

mg/l

200

pH

unit

6.5-8.5

Total solids in suspension

ml/l

150

Temperature

C

<35

Note: MLN stands for most likely number.

Source: Ministry of the Environment, Supreme Decree 003-2010-MINAM.

In 2012, urban wastewater went untreated in at least nine of the country’s 24 departments located in the Amazon HR (Figure 8.1).

Figure 8.1. Wastewater receiving treatment, by department
(Percentages)
picture

Source: National Superintendency of Sanitation Services (2013), Tratamiento de aguas residuales 2012.

In comparison, in OECD member countries, the proportion of the population connected to a treatment plant has risen from roughly 60% in the early 1990s to over 75% today.

The wastewater treatment technology used in Peru has evolved since 2003, with conventional methods such as the use of oxidation ponds being discontinued, and aerated lagoons, anaerobic and aerobic processes and activated sludge being introduced (Figure 8.2). In 2012, 46% of the wastewater produced in the Metropolitan Region of Lima was treated with secondary techniques (including aerated lagoons), 28% with anaerobic and aerobic systems, and 21% with activated sludge.

Figure 8.2. Waste water treatment methods in the Metropolitan Region of Lima.
(Litres per second)
picture

Source: INEI (2014), Perú. Anuario de Estadísticas Ambientales 2013.

The National Environmental Action Plan provides that all persons authorised to discharge wastewater must observe the MPLs by 2021. Failure to comply will result in suspension from the Wastewater Discharge and Reuse Adaptation Programme (PAVER). In recent years, the number of provisions issued on effluent MPLs has been increasing (Table 8.6). In 2012, most of the authorised volume of wastewater discharge was absorbed by the mining sector, with the fisheries, hydrocarbons and food sectors accounting for a much smaller share (MINAM, 2014).

Table 8.6. Activities and sectors subject to maximum permissible effluent limits

Sector/activity

Regulation

Mining-metallurgy

Supreme Decree 010-2010-MINAM

Domestic or municipal wastewater treatment plants

Supreme Decree 003-2010-MINAM

Electric power generation, transmission and distribution

Ministerial Decision 008-97-EM-DGAA

Liquid effluents in the hydrocarbons subsector

Supreme Decree 037-2008-PCM

Industrial activities producing cement, beer, leather and paper

Supreme Decree 003-2002-PRODUCE

Fish meal and fish oil production

Supreme Decree 010-2008-PRODUCE

Source: MINAM (2014), Informe nacional del estado del ambiente 2012-2013.

Rates

In the Metropolitan Region of Lima, water consumption tariffs rose sharply by just under 60%, between 2005 and 2014 after having been frozen since 2000. The average amount charged by the Lima Drinking Water and Sewerage Service (SEDAPAL) rose from S/.1.41 per m3 in 2005 to PEN 2.24 per m3 in 2014 (Figure 8.3). This rate is lower than that charged in other Peruvian cities, and it also varies according to the size of the supplier company. The water consumption charges prevailing in OECD countries vary from USD 0.7 in Seoul to USD 9.2 in Copenhagen (Figure 8.4) (IWA, 2010).

Figure 8.3. Drinking water consumption charges, 1996-2014
(Peruvian sol per m3)
picture

Source: National Superintendency of Sanitation Services (SUNASS).

Figure 8.4. Drinking water consumption charges in selected large cities
(USD per m3)
picture

Source: International Water Association (IWA), International Statistics for Water Services, 2010.

The rates charged by EPSs include a fixed charge in respect of the distribution cost, and a variable amount that depends on the volume of water consumed. The latter is organised in incremental block rates to provide incentives for water saving; these vary between PEN 1.5 per m3 (USD 0.4 per m3) for the “social rate” and PEN 6 per m3 (USD 1.8 per m3) for the normal-rate block, covering the use of drinking water, sewerage and wastewater treatment services.

The rates applicable to industries include a subsidy component in favour of residential users. One of the targets of the “Water for all” programme, implemented until 2012, was to halve the percentage of the population without access to continuous drinking water supply, sewerage and wastewater treatment services by 2015.9 In 2011-2012 a total of PEN 1.1 billion (USD 400 million) was spent on achieving that target. In 2012, a subsidy from wealthier to poorer households (the “social rate”) was also introduced (Table 8.7).

In 2008, more than 40% of water consumption was not billed; this calls for better detection of leaks and greater reduction of losses from clandestine use, inactive connections and faulty metering (Rojas-Ortuste, 2010). Farms make a special payment for use and exploitation (section 2.2).

Additional financing is needed to maintain or improve the drinking water supply and sanitation infrastructure, and to guarantee access to these services. In the last few years, investments in wastewater treatment infrastructure works have increased substantially, in both urban and rural zones. The amounts allocated grew from PEN 315 million in 2006 to PEN 2.313 billion in 2013; and urban zones received 60%-70% of the total in both periods (MVCS, undated).10 Nonetheless, investment still falls short of the level needed to reduce the environmental impact of wastewater discharged into water bodies. The National Water Plan estimates that investments of around PEN 50 billion (USD 15 billion) would be needed to expand the coverage of drinking water supply and sanitation services up to 2035. Of that total, 25% would be destined for drinking water, 25% for sewerage and 50% for wastewater treatment.

Table 8.7. Water and sanitation charges, 2012
(Peruvian sol per m3)

Category

Consumption range (m3/month)

Tariff

Drinking water

Sewerage and wastewater treatment

Residential

Social

0 or more

0.99

0.43

Domestic

0 - 10

0.99

0.43

10 - 25

1.15

0.50

25 - 50

2.55

1.11

50 or more

4.32

1.89

Non-residential

Commercial

0 - 1 000

4.32

1.89

1 000 or more

4.64

2.03

Industrial

0 - 1 000

4.32

1.89

1 000 or more

4.64

2.03

State

0 or more

2.42

1.06

Source: INEI (2014), Perú. Anuario de estadísticas ambientales 2013.

As noted by Cox and Borkey (2015), the combination of consumption tariffs, budgetary transfers, and Official Development Assistance (ODA) transfers, known as the “3 Ts”, could help to bridge the funding gap. The authors argue that a sustained flow of funds from these sources would make it easier to provide reimbursable assistance in the form of loans, bonds, and shares. Nonetheless, this “sustainable cost recovery” approach should be viewed as an intermediate step in achieving the long-term goal of “total cost recovery”. This reflects the belief that the tariffs, alone, should be sufficient to recover costs. Until an acceptable level of infrastructure is attained and household access improved, Peru could make use of public budget resources and ODA to complement the rates charged.

Consumption-based rate subsidies (“social tariff”) are granted to protect poor consumers; but lowering the price of water reduces the incentives to economise on its use. Moreover, sustainable cost recovery is impossible unless a balance is struck between access and financial sustainability. One way to achieve this would be to subsidise only part of the monthly consumption of the poorest households, which would have to pay the full rate if they exceed this amount. Chile, for example, uses this sort of scheme to avoid distorting price signals.

2. Management of water resources

2.1. Integrated management in the hydrographic basins

The Water Resources Act (Law No. 29338) was promulgated in 2009 with the aim of “regulating the use and integrated management of water” by hydrographic basin.11 The law strengthens the State function, by assigning normative, decision-making and sanctioning powers to a single institution: the National Water Authority (ANA), which was created in 2008 as an agency of the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation. Until then, this ministry was involved only in quantitative management, while qualitative measurement was the exclusive preserve of the Ministry of Health.

The decentralised units of ANA are based on Peru’s 159 hydrographic basins, which are grouped under 14 Water Administrative Authorities (AAA); and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs participates in the management of the 34 transboundary watersheds. These authorities co-ordinate their activities with the Local Water Boards (ALA). Three AAAs already have a local administration and 72 of these entities have been created thus far.

It should be noted that the jurisdictions of regional governments do not always coincide with those corresponding to the hydrographic units of the administrative authorities and local administrations. The National Tribunal for the Settlement of Water Disputes is the highest administrative level for resolving complaints and appeals filed against decisions issued by AAA and ANA. As of 2013, twenty-five water disputes had been registered in 13 of the country’s departments (MINAM, 2014).

The Water Resources Act provides for the creation of the National System of Water Resource Management (SNGRH), with responsibility for integrated management in each hydrographic basin. System participants include the National Water Authority, as governing body; the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation; the Ministry of the Environment; the Ministry of Housing, Construction and Sanitation; the Ministry of Energy and Mines; the Ministry of Production and the Ministry of Health; along with regional and local governments; water-user organisations; operators; rural and indigenous communities, and public entities.

The law also provides for user participation in decision-making and planning, through watershed boards (consejos de recursos hídricos de cuenca), permanent bodies and agencies of ANA. These councils consist of representatives of the same entities that participate in SNGRH, except for the ministries and operating enterprises, plus academics. Representatives of the sector ministries related to special projects also participate in the councils, alongside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the case of trans-boundary watersheds.

In 2012, the State Policy on Water Resources, also known as “Policy 33”, was approved, recognising the need for integrated management of water to benefit the entire nation, and containing guidelines on the subject. Subsequently, measures started to be adopted to implement the policy in accordance with the watershed management plans (PGRHC), which must be approved by the water resource councils. The plans are binding instruments for the management of water resources, and they must include a diagnostic assessment, a programme of measures, and a financing proposal. Thus far, six watershed boards have been created and have plans approved.

In October 2015, the Regional Water and Sanitation Fund (FORASAN) was created to finance the application of the management plan in the Chira-Piura river basin, which is inhabited by over 1.7 million people. The fund, which received an initial capital contribution of USD 300 000 from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, is a long-term financial mechanism with potential to pool efforts and combine financial resources from different institutions for integrated water management, such as for the conservation of ecosystems and the development of a water culture.

The Ministry of the Environment is leading the preparation of environmental recovery plans, to complement the watershed management plans. In 2009, five priority watersheds were selected to start the recovery work, those of the rivers Rímac, Mantaro, Quilca, Vítor and Chili; along with Lake Titicaca and El Ferrol bay. In 2010, a further five watersheds ware prioritised.

In its capacity as governing body of the National Water Resource Management System, ANA formulated the National Water Resource Policy and Strategy (PENRH), as a binding planning instrument that came into force in May 2005 (Supreme Decree 006-2015 MINAGRI), and the National Water Plan, approved in July 2015 (Supreme Decree 013-2015-MINAGRI). The plan establishes five public policy pillars: management of quantity, quality and timeliness; a water culture; and adaptation to climate change. It also sets targets for 2035, along with the entities responsible for the activities, and the investments and financing sources.

As regards quantity, the National Water Plan proposes programmes to control and measure demand, improve water distribution networks, mechanise irrigation, and expand the agricultural frontier by increasing efficiency. In the case of quality, the aim is to expand the coverage of the drinking water, sewerage and wastewater treatment networks. “Timeliness management” should lead to better distribution of water throughout the year, based on an expansion of irrigation and sanitation in poor areas. To promote the development of a water culture, the aim is to foster the establishment of mechanisms of participation and consultation, communication and awareness-raising related to the integrated management of water resources. In terms of adaptation to climate change and other extreme events, it is necessary to increase knowledge on the effects of climate change; improve the management of flood risks, huaicos (mud and rock slides) and landslips, and adopt measures in situations of drought alert.

The National Water Plan contains guidelines on the investments that regional and local governments can undertake, assisted by the National Water Authority, taking account of the relevant development plans; the National Investment Plan of the Sanitation Sector of the Ministry of Housing, Construction and Sanitation, and irrigation projects. Under the National Water Plan, the aim is to invest PEN 89 billion (USD 26 billion) by 2021, and PEN 65 billion (USD 19 billion) by 2035, which will make a total of PEN 154 billion (USD 45 billion).

2.2. Payment for use and discharge

Peru does not have a market in water rights. The rights in question (licences, authorisations and permits) are non-transferable and are granted for an indefinite period, as long as the activity for which they were granted continues to be undertaken; but they can be revoked if sanctions are applied. Under current regulations, water is a good in the public domain, the use of which is prioritised for population consumption. The watershed management plans (PGRHC) must stipulate the ecological flows12 that must be available to all users in a given watershed and cannot be diverted to any consumptive use. According to the provisions of the Water Resources Act, ecological flows are defined on the basis of specific studies of all segments of the rivers.

Payment for water use has increased significantly since it was introduced in 2009, following the entry into force of the Water Resources Act (Table 8.8). The rates charged have evolved on the basis of the conclusions of technical studies on aquifer volumes, and they vary according to water availability, which reflects its scarcity, and use. The tariff on water for human consumption is much lower than the rates charged on other uses; and, since 2013, the highest rate has been levied on the mining sector. The rate payable by the agriculture sector is equivalent to that charged for the consumption of surface water, approved by the technical administration of irrigation districts, the current Local Water Administrations (ALA). This is extremely low, at just PEN 1 to PEN 5 per 10 000 m³.13 It should be noted that the payments are applicable only to surface water, and no tariff has yet been set for the exploitation of groundwater (Rojas-Ortuste, 2010).

Table 8.8. Water consumption payments
(Peruvian sol per m3)

Year

Water availability

Sector

Industrial

Mining

Population

Other

2009

High

0.045

0.030

0.0042

".

Medium

0.055

0.040

0.0130

"

Low

0.070

0.050

0.0220

"

2015

High

0.070

0.090

0.0046

0.030

Medium

0.140

0.180

0.0180

0.060

Low

0.220

0.280

0.0330

0.090

Source: National Water Authority (ANA).

In 2011, new payments were introduced for wastewater discharges, and by 2012 the only distinction made was between the charges for domestic and industrial wastewater, which were 0.0040 and 0.010 PEN per m3, respectively.14 Since 2013, wastewater discharge payments have been set in line with the categories of the environmental quality standards for water, so as to represent the social, economic and environmental cost of pollution of the recipient water body. The rate varies from one sector to another (Table 8.9). As with water consumption payments, the mining sector pays the highest rate for discharges, while human consumption pays the lowest. In 2015, the sanitation sector, which includes wastewater treatment plants, was brought into this scheme.

Table 8.9. Wastewater discharge payments, 2013-2015
(Peruvian sol per m3)

Environmental quality standards

Sector

Industrial

Mining

Energy

Agribusiness

Population

Sanitation a

1

0.026

0.058

0.050

0.013

0.0063

0.0032

2

0.023

0.053

0.048

0.012

0.0060

0.0030

3

0.021

0.048

0.042

0.010

0.0053

0.0027

4

0.022

0.050

0.045

0.011

0.0055

0.0028

Note: a) As from 2015.

Source: National Water Authority (ANA).

Under the provisions of article 95 of the Water Resources Act (LRH), the payments must cover the cost of integrated water management (for which ANA is responsible), along with its recovery and the repair of environmental damage caused by the discharges. The revenue received by ANA in 2011 and 2012 was insufficient to cover its ordinary operating costs. In 2012, its total budget was PEN 130 million, so the annual deficit was around 60% (Table 8.10).

Table 8.10. Revenue obtained from the payments
(PEN millions)

Year

Non-agricultural uses

Use of groundwater

Agricultural uses

Discharges of treated wastewater

Total

2011

34

1

10

6

51

2012

37

2

11

7

57

Source: National Water Authority (ANA).

Although the system of payments for consumption and discharges was set up to offer incentives to users to treat water as a scarce resource, it basically seems to finance ANA management expenses. This allocation of the payments to finance ANA, and possibly also the local water administrations, is governed by the “water pays for water” principle and is problematic. The earmarking to specific purposes of amounts obtained in respect of pollution contravenes the “polluter pays” principle, whereby the polluter must, at least, cover the marginal cost of the pollution and, in the best of cases, all related externalities.

As there is no market for water use rights, the application of extraction charges could help make resource allocation more efficient and water supply more sustainable. The base and rate of the charge should be identical across all water uses, and preferential rates for specific user categories should be avoided. In particular, it is hard to find an economic justification for granting preferential rates to parties in collective management agreements, who are mostly farmers. Nonetheless, if agreements of this type encourage the adoption of more environmentally-friendly practices, they could help to progressively integrate the external costs. To provide appropriate market signals in relation to water use, extraction charges must be consistent with the cost of the environmental externalities caused, which requires geographical and seasonal adaptation to enable them to reflect water availability.

The calculation of the pollution charges applied to the firms, whether or not these are connected to the sewerage network, can either be based on real (measured) pollution or be estimated by applying technical coefficients to specific emissions. The payment can be reduced if abatement measures are adopted (or determined or estimated on a fixed basis). The setting of the pollution payment under these criteria makes it possible to offer a real incentive to reduce the pollution, provided no exemptions or discounts are granted to certain industrial uses or certain categories of polluting discharges.

It is practically impossible to establish non-pollution incentives for residential users. It would be too costly to measure the volume of household polluting discharges, since the sanitation tariffs are generally calculated on the basis of water consumption, assuming that the cost of treatment of wastewater is proportional. In France, the basic rates per pollutant, which are the same as those applied to firms, are based on a uniform municipal estimation of the daily volume of pollution produced per person per cubic metre of water consumed. In the cases of both firms and households, a geographical adaptation needs to take account of the pollution-vulnerability of the immediate environment.

With the exception of large livestock farms, which can receive the same treatment as firms, it is difficult to set water pollution fees for units in the agriculture sector, whether the pollution is produced by livestock or by crops. Firstly, water pollution attributable to crop farming is inherently diffuse. Secondly, the alteration of the quality of water caused by fertilisers and manure varies according to climate, the hydrological characteristics of the water course, the nature of the soil, the type of crop and farming practices. Accordingly, individual measurement of pollutants, which would be needed to establish incentives, would be too costly.

It is relatively easy to tax the nitrogen content of fertilisers, but such taxes would be poorly targeted since the link between fertiliser use and leaching depends on the aforementioned factors. Moreover, they would only partially address the pollution problem, because they do not include nitrogen of animal origin. The only way to solve this is to measure the nitrogen entering farming units and the nitrogen produced in them, such as that incorporated in harvest residues, and tax the difference between the two (the nitrogen balance). This would correspond to the quantity that remains in the soil and could end up in the water. A tax of this type would be the first step towards internalising the costs of pollution caused by agriculture, and it would have to be differentiated by zones, based on environmental risk. Nonetheless, the costs of administration and of collecting data to establish, control and tax the nitrogen balance could be significant; and the net benefits associated with this tax need to be compared with those of a system in which a tax on fertilisers is combined with a tax on pollution caused by livestock activities.

2.3. Risk-based approach

In many regions of Peru, water security is at risk owing to growing demand, water stress, and the steady expansion of polluting sources. Accordingly, there is an urgent need to speed up efforts to control better the risks of water scarcity, floods, poor quality, and reduction of the resilience of freshwater bodies (rivers, lakes and aquifers). The adoption of an approach that prioritises explicit control of water hazards increases the chances that a country will achieve its water-related economic, environmental and social objectives, without excessive costs for society (OECD, 2013b).

Application of a risk-based approach focuses on water security, first and foremost by determining acceptable risk levels, and striking a balance between these and the expected benefits. Consequently, an approach of this type can help ensure that the implicit risk level of the different policy actions reflects the social costs. It is also flexible, so the acceptable risk level can be adapted relatively quickly if efficient mitigation measures are applied, or if new economic development possibilities justify the implementation of activities aimed at reducing the risk level. A risk-based approach makes it possible to move from reactive to proactive policies. Instead of simply responding to water crises, which tends to be very costly for society, Peru could embark on a process of evaluation and appropriate management and anticipation of risks, along with periodic evaluations. Many of the country’s regions have available water resources that have been overallocated, so a better understanding of the risks could help identify alternatives for improving the allocation of water between agricultural and urban users, and environmental uses.

Water security has to do with tolerance of an acceptable level of risk. For example, the risk of exploiting an aquifer is evaluated in order to determine how much recharge can potentially be allocated. For this purpose, social, environmental and economic risks are classified as high, medium or low (Table 8.11), according to the likelihood of abstraction affecting the values of the aquifer (or the sensitivity to those values to abstraction), as well as the consequences of that impact (i.e. how important particular values are). For example, a groundwater-dependent ecosystem may be highly sensitive to water table changes, but of low environmental value, so the risk rating in this case would be low. The highest risk ratings for on-site and economic development risks (respectively) are used to identify the initial risk values.

Table 8.11. Valuing the risk of exploitation of an aquifer

Risk

Values

Sensitivity

Consequences of inaction

Risk rating

Total risk

On-site

Aquifer properties

What is the critical point beyond which the aquifer's adaptation capacity would be exceeded (and thus its resilience damaged)? How sensitive is aquifer integrity to abstraction?

If aquifer integrity were impacted, how significant would that be?

High, medium or low

Highest risk rating

Groundwater-dependent ecosystems

How dependent are the ecosystems on groundwater? What is the likelihood that ecosystems would be impacted if water was abstracted?

How significant are the ecosystems in terms of environmental value?

High, medium or low

Social and cultural

How dependent are the cultural and social values on groundwater?What is the likelihood that these values would be impacted if water were abstracted?

How significant are those ecosystems in terms of social and cultural values?

High, medium or low

Economic development

Current and future water use

How important is the resource for meeting current and future development needs?Are there alternative water sources or alternative production approaches that do not need to use groundwater?

How significant is the current and future productive use/ development for the community?

High, medium or low

Highest risk rating

Source: Government of Western Australia (2011), “Groundwater risk-based allocation planning process”.

A risk matrix is used to convert on-site and development risks into a proportion of the exploitable recharge (Table 8.12). This proportion is then applied to the recharge volume estimated to establish the allocation limit. The risk matrix can be used to estimate the advantages and disadvantages between the two risk groups. For example, in a maximum allocation of 70% of the recharge —in other words excluding at least 30% of the estimated recharge— account is taken of the opportunity cost of not allocating water to a development objective, while also avoiding possible overallocation. Using this matrix also helps protect the integrity of the aquifer, among other things by reducing the risk of salt water intrusion. The allocation limit can be reconsidered when more information is available. Drawing up a risk matrix is consistent with the recommendation contained in the PNRH strategic environmental assessment that the risk of overexploitation be reduced by limiting extractions and continuously monitoring the reaction of the aquifers.

Table 8.12. Determination of an acceptable risk level in exploiting an aquifer
(Percentages of estimated recharge)

On-site risk

Economic development

High

Medium

Low

 

High

5

25

50

Medium

25

50

60

Low

50

60

70

Source: Government of Western Australia (2011), “Groundwater risk-based allocation planning process”.

If appropriate, the final ratings shown in Table 8.12 can be revised on the basis of the proposed mitigation measures. If the risk mitigation strategies reduce the global risk to on-site values, then the reduced risk value is used in the risk matrix.

Bibliography

ANA (National Water Authority) (2015), Informe Técnico, No. 021-2015-ANA-DGCRH-GOCRH, Lima.

_____ (2013), Plan Nacional de Recursos Hídricos del Perú. Memoria 2013, Lima, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation (MINAGRI).

Cox, A. and P. Borkey (2015), “Challenges and policy options for financing urban water and sanitation”, Water and Cities in Latin America, Challenges for Sustainable Development, I. Aguilar-Barajas et al. (eds.), London, Earthscan.

Government of Western Australia (2011), “Groundwater risk-based allocation planning process”, Report, No. 45, Perth.

INEI (National Institute of Statistics and Informatics) (2014), Perú. Anuario de Estadísticas Ambientales 2013, Lima.

_____ (2013), IV Censo Nacional Agropecuario 2012. Resultados definitivos, Lima.

IWA (International Water Association) (2010), International Statistics for Water Services.

MINAM (Ministry of the Environment) (2015), AgendAmbiente Perú 2015-2016. Agenda Nacional de Acción Ambiental, Lima.

_____ (2014), Informe nacional del estado del ambiente 2012-2013, Lima.

_____ (2011), Plan Nacional de Acción Ambiental. PLANAA-Perú 2011-2021, Lima.

MVCS (Ministry of Housing, Construction and Sanitation) (n/d), “Programa Nacional de Saneamiento Urbano”, Lima, unpublished.

OECD (2013), Environment at a Glance 2013: OECD Indicators, Paris, OECD Publishing.

_____ (2013b), Water Security for Better Lives, Paris, OECD Publishing.

OEFA (Environmental Assessment and Enforcement Agency) (2014), Fiscalización ambiental en aguas residuales, Lima.

Páucar, A. (2008), “Perú: acceso y calidad del agua en tres distritos de Lima”, El agua como recurso sustentable y de uso múltiple, políticas para su utilización en zonas urbanas y peri urbana de América Latina y El Caribe, J.M. Cavallini, S. Oakley and L. Egocheaga (eds.), Santiago, Catalonia.

Rojas-Ortuste, F. (2010), Recursos hídricos. Perú 2010, Mexico City, Water Center for Latin America and the Caribbean/Tecnológico de Monterrey.

SINIA (National Environmental Information System) (2013), Cifras ambientales 2014, Lima, Ministry of the Environment (MINAM).

Notes

← 1. Unless indicated otherwise, the information presented in this section is based mostly on data from the National Water Authority (ANA, 2013).

← 2. PLANAA Peru envisages 25% of farming areas being irrigated using sustainable techniques by 2021.

← 3. Gravity irrigation is about 40%-50% efficient, compared to 75% efficiency in the case of spray irrigation and 90% in the case of drip irrigation.

← 4. Excessive irrigation of agricultural land is one of the main causes of salinity.

← 5. For ease of presentation, the official map of Peru’s hydrographic basins identifies only 115 of the most important basins, although there are over 1 200 in all.

← 6. See [online] http://www.ana.gob.pe/sites/default/files/plannacionalrecursoshidricos2013.pdf.

← 7. The quality of surface water is monitored by checking compliance with parameters relating to chemical oxygen demand, ammoniacal nitrogen, nitrates and phosphates, XICP metals and total metals (mercury) oils and fats, as well as total coliforms and faecal streptococci.

← 8. Law No. 26.338 makes the municipalities responsible for providing water-related services.

← 9. The programme was concentrated in regions with poverty rates above 30%.

← 10. In 2011, appropriations for sanitation from the public budget amounted to PEN 3.2 billion, of which 70% went to urban zones and 30% to rural areas.

← 11. The Water Resources Act (Ley de Recursos Hídricos) repealed the 1969 General Water Act (Ley General de Aguas), the provisions of which primarily addressed the agriculture sector, and under which a sector-based management scheme by irrigation district was set up, prioritizing coastal zones. The General Water Law (Decree Law 17 752) was issued to complement the Agrarian Reform Law.

← 12. The ecological (or environmental) flow is defined as the volume of water that needs to be maintained in natural water sources to protect or conserve the ecosystems involved, the aesthetics of the landscape, or other aspects of scientific or cultural interest (Article 153 – Supreme Decree No. 001-2010-AG).

← 13. Cultivation of one hectare of rice uses 20 000 m3 per year.

← 14. No volumetric rate is applied for discharges of less than 100 000m³ per year, but the total cost was considered.