Spain cancels Catalonia emergency water pipeline

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A controversial plan to build a pipeline to divert water from the river Ebro to the Barcelona has been cancelled as recent rains filled reservoirs to 50 percent capacity.

6 June 2008

MADRID - The Spanish government Friday cancelled a controversial plan to build a 62-kilometre pipeline to divert water from the river Ebro in the Tarragona region to the Catalan capital Barcelona, Deputy Prime Minister Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega said.

There was no longer the situation of "extraordinary necessity" that had prompted the plan, Vega said.

Catalonia had suffered from its worst drought in decades, but rains have now filled reservoirs to about 50 percent of their capacity.

The pipeline was opposed by other regions, such as neighbouring Aragon, which wanted a say over the use of the river running through its territory.

Ecologists also criticise water diversion schemes as harmful to the environment.

Catalonia had already partially lifted other emergency measures against the drought, such as restrictions on the use of water by residents in the Barcelona region.

[dpa / Expatica]

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