Brazil judge suspends licence for hydroelectric dam

A  hydroelectric dam in Brazil. (Antonio Scorza, AFP)
A hydroelectric dam in Brazil. (Antonio Scorza, AFP)

Sao Paulo - A judge has suspended the operating licence for a massive hydroelectric dam in Brazil's Amazon jungle state of Para weeks before the first of its 24 turbines is scheduled to begin generating electricity.

Federal Judge Maria Carolina Valente do Carmo ordered the suspension on Thursday.

She said she ordered the suspension because the Norte Energia consortium that is building the dam failed to comply with a previously established requirement that called for the re-opening the regional offices of the federal indigenous affairs department in the area where the dam is being built.

Norte Energia said it had not been informed of the judge's ruling.

The dam would be the world's third-largest hydroelectric energy producer behind China's Three Gorges dam and Itaipu, which straddles the border of Brazil and Paraguay.

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