Heavy Rain Means Water Reserves Are Now Sufficient For 2 Years Consumption
From today until Friday, the Algarve will be under yellow warning due to the forecast of sometimes heavy showers, accompanied by thunderstorms, according to the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere (IPMA).
img decoding=”async” src=”http://algarvedailynews.com/images/news2/18852.jpg” alt=”Dr Photo – HEAVY RAIN MEANS WATER RESERVES ARE NOW SUFFICIENT FOR 2 YEARS CONSUMPTION” width=”160″ style=”margin-right: 10px; margin-bottom: 5px; float: left;” />From today until Friday, the Algarve will be under yellow warning due to the forecast of sometimes heavy showers, accompanied by thunderstorms, according to the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere (IPMA).
span>The IPMA also placed the district of Faro with yellow warning because of the sea turmoil, forecasting south easterly waves of 2 metres. The forecast also points to a weak to moderate south / southeast wind, being moderate to strong in the highlands of the Central and South regions of Portugal.
span>However, all of this Winter rain is good news, resulting in a significant increase in the level of the Algarve’s dams, with Teresa Fernandes, a spokesperson for Águas do Algarve, estimating that the current reserves will serve for “two years”, in a region that has “an average consumption of 73 million cubic hectometers [of water] per year”.
span>Although the rainfall recorded has not yet been “ideal”, it has brought “a significant increase in reserves for public supply”, with the level of the Odelouca, Odeleite and Beliche dams rising.
In February, the Odelouca dam was at 63% volume, while “in the same period last year it was at 40%”, said the Águas do Algarve spokesperson, responsible for the intercity water supply system in the region.
“Then we have the Odeleite dam, which at the moment has a decent volume of 60% and, in the past, in the same period, it was 27%”, she added that, “in Beliche, the dam that is downstream of Odeleite, last year was 24% full and this year it is already 52%”.
span>Ms Fernandes warned, however, of the need to “not abuse water consumption”, warning that “periods of drought are cyclical and increasingly long” and water must be used “with resilience, efficiency and intelligence ”Because you can’t save it when it doesn’t exist”.
span>“It is not during drought periods that we are going to say ‘don’t waste water’, because at that time there is no more. It is important that at this stage, when we have water, there is awareness that it is a scarce commodity and that people do not abuse consumption or misuse it. This will make this water last for more years and, instead of lasting two, it may last for three years ”, she said.
span>Teresa Fernandes also said that it is necessary to continue with the measures foreseen in the Water Efficiency Plan of the Algarve, such as combating losses in the networks or reusing water from Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTP) for irrigation or agriculture.
span>The Lusa news agency also questioned the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA) about the situation of water reserves in the Algarve and they replied that, “in most of the country, the levels of storage allow us to face this year without any problems ”. According to the APA, “when there is more availability, interventions must be carried out that allow us to have more resilience in the driest years”.
span>On Tuesday, the Minister of the Environment, João Pedro Matos Fernandes, announced a price increase of water in the Algarve is likely, in the future, due to the need to operat two projects that will ensure there will be no less water in the region in the coming decades.
span>The connection of a water intake from the Guadiana in Pomarão to the Odeleite dam, estimated at 55 million euros, and the desalination of sea water, at a cost of 65 million, are two projects integrated in the Water Efficiency Plan for the region , which is expected to be completed in 2026.
em style=”color: #ffffff;”>Original article available in Portuguese at http://postal.pt/