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The energy of the territories and the nature of the socio-environmental conflicts arising from the 12th Gas Petroleum Bidding Round, in Pontal do Paranapanema/SP and in the Midwest of the State of Paraná

Grant number: 18/13693-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2019
Effective date (End): February 28, 2022
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Geography - Human Geography
Principal researcher:João Osvaldo Rodrigues Nunes
Grantee:Alessandro Donaire de Santana
Home Institution: Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia (FCT). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Presidente Prudente. Presidente Prudente , SP, Brazil


The growing demand for energy, still anchored in the fossilist pattern, is a fundamental dimension of analysis to understand the relations of power, disputes, impacts and socio-environmental conflicts in the territories, since at the core of the ongoing energy transition, directly linked to renewable energies, strategies and policies have been adopted to exploit controversial energy resources, such as shale gas through hydraulic fracturing in sedimentary basins. In Pontal do Paranapanema, West of the State of São Paulo, and in the Midwest of the State of Paraná, in the Paraná Basin, the concession of conventional and non-conventional energy resources concession contracts, during the 12th. Round of Bids promoted by the National Petroleum Agency in 2013, generated conflicts and the consequent suspension of their effects for justice in both states, in addition to a moratorium imposed by the government of Paraná. In this sense, the central hypothesis of the project is based on the conception that the socio-environmental conflicts unleashed with the 12th. Round of Bids result from the perception that the hydraulic fracturing for the exploration of the shale gas would cause negative socio-environmental impacts, evidencing, therefore, territorial disputes between different social and economic groups. Thus, the main objective is to analyze socio-environmental conflicts in light of the theoretical-methodological perspective of Political Ecology, a transdisciplinary field appropriate to Geography, which considers the multiple relations, interests and contradictions of the relation between nature and society; and based on the geographical categories of space and territory. In order to do so, we will analyze academic works that address the impacts and conflicts in countries that already use hydraulic fracturing, such as USA and Argentina; references that discuss the energy transition and how the unconventional fossil fuels are inserted in it; the documents that substantiated the ANP bid; public civil actions; the moratorium of the government of Paraná; technical documents such as the geological map of the State of São Paulo (IPT, 1981), the description of the geological aspects of Paraná (MINEROPAR, 2006); the work of Maack (2002); and the lithostratigraphic charts of the Paraná Basin (MILANI et al., 2007); besides bibliographies and other references that allow to understand the use and occupation of the past and present land in those regions. Fieldwork and interviews with representatives of the Public Prosecutor's Office, city halls and other sectors of society will also be carried out, with the aim of identifying contradictory/conflicting interests and, thus, analyzing the environmental perception regarding the exploration of shale gas through hydraulic fracturing in those regions. (AU)

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