Water commissioner urges calm in midst of "worst drought in decades"

1st February 2008, Comments 0 comments

Water authority commissioner Jaime Palop announced yesterday that Spain is currently suffering "the worst drought of the last few decades, even worse than that of the 1990s."

1 February 2008

MADRID - Water authority commissioner Jaime Palop announced yesterday that Spain is currently suffering "the worst drought of the last few decades, even worse than that of the 1990s." However, he said that he does not foresee having to impose water restrictions on the reservoirs run by the Environment Ministry.

Palop, who was in Toledo on Thursday attending a conference on water pollution, claimed that the current drought is affecting "practically the entire Mediterranean region, from Catalonia to Algeciras."

Despite the dry spell, the commissioner urged calm, saying that it was not foreseeable that water supplies under ministry control would have to be restricted to prevent against summer shortages.

He did, however, warn that the agricultural sector that depends on the reserves in reservoirs in Júcar (Valencia), Segura (Almería) and Guadalquivir (Andalusia) "is not going to follow normal irrigation programs," adding that in Catalonia "the situation is very bad," as well as in Málaga, where agricultural use of water is currently being limited.

In Catalonia, the regional water authority is planning for emergency measures should supplies reach critical levels.

[Copyright EL PAÍS 2008]

Subject: Spanish news

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