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Brazilian court rejects request for Belo Monte hydropower plant suspension

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A federal Brazilian court has rejected a request from a public prosecutor that would have suspended work on the 11.2-GW Belo Monte hydroelectric plant.

Prosecutors had argued that developer Norte Energia did not properly consult with aboriginal groups potentially impacted by Belo Monte. The court found "inconsistencies" in claims that access to drinking water would be restricted, a Norte Energia statement said.

"[Norte Energia] has met all conditions stipulated in the project's environmental license," the developer said.

Construction of the controversial US$13 billion project, which will be located along the Xingu River in Brazil's northern Para state, has been halted a number of times since its development.

HydroWorld.com reported in October 2013 that the country's Regional Federal Court of the 1st Region had granted an injunction canceling a license for Belo Monte's construction, though other stoppages have been caused by worksite occupations and questions about the legitimacy of the plant's regulatory approvals.

Belo Monte has a completion deadline of 2018, though Norte Energia filed a request for a construction extension within the past month.

For more news from Latin America, visit here.

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