Drought: Algarvean officials look into new dam and desalination plant

drought meetingToday a group of Algarvean officials from a range of municipalities met to discuss the future investments and steps to be taken in order to strengthen the distribution and correct use of water in this region of the country, in an initiative that took place within the framework of the AMAL Intermunicipal Council.

The AMAL said in a statement that at this meeting, alongside the General Assembly of Águas do Algarve, to, among other topics, discuss going forward with the necessary procedures to carry out an environmental impact study for the construction of the Foupana dam. The officials hope that the construction of a new dam will aid in reinforcing the region’s water supply, namely in times of drought, such as the one which the Algarve is still suffering to some degree.

Another decision relates to the completion of a technical, economic and financial feasibility study, looking at the possible construction of a desalination plant.  It is recalled that these measures are part of an inter-municipal strategy which also promotes the reuse of wastewater from the various wastewater treatment facilities, the reduction of network losses, and the development of awareness campaigns with consumers.  

The Algarve Intermunicipal Community has also decided to name Osvaldo Gonçalves as the Head of the newly created AMAL working group on Water Issues, which brings together ministerial officials from a handful of municipalities, the Portuguese Environment Agency, and the ministries of agriculture, tourism.

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0 #1 Trevor Morgan 2020-01-12 19:56
I fail to see how this or the other (S. Brás) proposed dam can be relied upon to solve the problem of drought. If it doesn't rain (enough) it won't matter how good the dam is. No water in = no water out.
Furthermore, awareness campaigns are futile. Most private individuals pay for their water in one way or another (borehole pumps are not cheap to run) so tend to use water only as required. The biggest problem is the large-scale poly tunnel farming and of course golf courses. The golf courses it could be argued bring prosperity to the region, but the poly tunnel "farms" bring very few benefits - and they are sucking water out of the ground like there's no tomorrow- just ask any borehole owner who lives near one.
Desalination would seems the best way forward, especially if it can be solar-powered as it is in parts of Spain.

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