The law today
Environment / Natural Resources
On January 15, 2021, Exempt Resolution No. 2.662, of December 28, 2020, was published in the Official Gazette, in which the General Directorate of Water established the list of water use rights subject to the payment of a patent for non-use of the water, for fiscal benefit, when the water is not associated with a collection (and restitution) work necessary to use it (Article 129 bis 9 of the Water Code), process 2021.
Within this process, it is necessary to have the following times in sight:
– Deadline to appeal the decision (Appeal for Reconsideration or Claim, article 137 of the Water Code): until 26 February 2021.
– Deadline to comply with the obligation to pay (Article 129 bis 7° of the Water Code): until 31 March 2021.
– Term of the General Treasury of the Republic to include the Rights in the judicial auction lists (article 129 bis 11° and 12° of the Water Code): between the first of April and the first of June 2021.
General Directorate of Water – Supreme Decree No. 53 of the Ministry of Public Works, approves regulations for monitoring effective surface water extraction.
On October 15, 2020, Supreme Decree No. 53 (“D.S. No. 53/2020”), dated April 3, 2020, of the Ministry of Public Works (“MOP”) was published, which regulates some of the amendments introduced by Law No. 21. 064, published on January 27, 2018, that is, to make explicit the terms, criteria, and technical conditions necessary to apply the well-founded resolutions issued by the General Water Directorate to comply with the obligation to install and maintain a Measurement and Transmission System to control, measure, and report the water extracted by users’ organizations or the exclusive owner of an aqueduct that extracts water from a natural stream, including water extracted from accumulation works located on the natural course. Also, users’ organizations or the exclusive owner of an aqueduct that draws water from a natural stream, and are users of non-consumptive surface water rights, must install a measurement system at the point of restitution (Article 38 and 307 bis of the Water Code).
General comptroller’s office, ecological conservation areas defined in territorial planning instruments should be considered as areas placed under official protection
On September 30, 2020, the General Comptroller of the Republic (“CGR”), issued Opinion No. 39766/2020, in which it ruled that the Ecological Preservation Areas, defined in territorial planning instruments, must be considered as areas placed under official protection for purposes of Article 10, letter p), of Law No. 19,300, on the General Basis of the Environment, so that projects or activities, likely to cause environmental impact, which are located in such areas, must enter the Environmental Assessment System.
In combination with this, the CGR orders the Environmental Evaluation Service to adapt the Instructional Letter No. 130,844, of 2013, and said service must inform the CGR of this within 30 days. The aforementioned document unifies criteria and technical requirements on areas placed under official protection and protected areas for the purposes of the Environmental Impact Assessment System.
Notwithstanding, this Opinion shall not apply to projects already approved.