Get to know the rules in force in the 145 affected municipalities. In the Algarve, the municipalities of Tavira, Vila do Bispo and Vila Real de Santo António all increased the risk level to 'Very High', joining 9 other municipalities in the region that already had the maximum level of restrictions.
The epidemiological situation has worsened again in the country, with 61 municipalities (up by 14) at very high risk and 55 (up by 12) at high risk for the incidence of Covid-19. There are still 29 (one less) municipalities on alert.
The digital certificate or a negative test is now required:
in tourist establishments and local accommodation, every day and throughout the national territory;
to access to the interior of restaurants (but not to the terrace), on Fridays from 7pm and during weekends and holidays, in municipalities at high and very high risk.
Rules for the 61 municipalities at very high risk, of which 12 are in the Algarve (new entries marked with an asterisk):
Albergaria-a-Velha, Albufeira , Alcochete, Alenquer* , Aljustrel* , Almada, Amadora, Arraiolos* , Aveiro, Azambuja* , Barreiro, Batalha* , Benavente, Cascais, Espinho* , Faro , Gondomar* , Ílhavo, Lagoa , Lagos , Lisbon, Loulé , Loures, Lourinhã, Lousada* , Mafra, Maia* , Matosinhos, Mira, Moita, Montijo, Nazaré, Odivelas, Oeiras, Olhão , Oliveira do Bairro, Palmela, Paredes* , Pedrógão Grande*, Peniche, Portimão, Porto, Póvoa de Varzim, Santo Tirso, São Brás de Alportel , Seixal, Sesimbra, Setúbal, Silves , Sines, Sintra, Sobral de Monte Agraço, Tavira * , Vagos, Valongo* , Vila do Bispo * , Vila Franca de Xira, Vila Nova de Famalicão, Vila Nova de Gaia, Vila Real de Santo António and Viseu.
Mandatory telework when activities allow;
Limitation of circulation on public roads from 11 pm;
The digital certificate or a negative test is now required inside the restaurants (and not on the terrace), on Fridays from 7 pm and during weekends and holidays.
Restaurants and cafes are open until 22:30 (indoors, with a maximum of 4 people per group; on the terrace, 6 people per group);
Cultural shows until 22:30;
Weddings and baptisms with 25% of the capacity;
Food retail trade until 9pm during the week and until 7pm on weekends and holidays;
Non-food retail trade until 9 pm during the week and until 3:30 pm on weekends and holidays;
Gyms without group classes, low and medical risk sports
Outdoor events with reduced capacity, to be defined by the DGS;
Citizen offices with face-to-face service by appointment.
Rules for the 55 councils at high risk (2 in the Algarve):
Águeda, Alcobaça, Alcoutim , Amarante, Anadia, Arruda dos Vinhos, Avis, Barcelos, Bombarral, Braga, Cadaval, Caldas da Rainha, Cantanhede, Cartaxo, Castelo de Paiva, Castro Marim , Chaves, Coimbra, Constance, Elvas, Estarreja, Fafe , Felgueiras, Figueira da Foz, Guarda, Guimarães, Leiria, Marco de Canaveses, Marinha Grande, Mogadouro, Montemor-o-Novo, Montemor-o-Velho, Murtosa, Óbidos, Ourém, Ovar, Paços de Ferreira, Paredes de Coura, Penafiel, Porto de Mós, Rio Maior, Salvaterra de Magos, Santa Maria da Feira, Santarém, Santiago do Cacém, São João da Madeira, Serpa, Torres Vedras, Trofa, Valpaços, Viana do Castelo, Vila do Conde, Vila Real, Vila Viçosa and Vizela.
Mandatory telework when activities allow;
Limitation of circulation on public roads from 11 pm;
A digital certificate or a negative test is now required to access the interior of the restaurants (and not the terrace), on Fridays from 7 pm and during weekends and holidays.
Restaurants, cafes and patisseries can be open until 22:30 (inside, with a maximum of 6 people per group; on the terrace, 10 people per group);
Cultural shows until 22:30;
Weddings and baptisms with 50% of the capacity;
Food and non-food retail trade until 9 pm;
For the 30 municipalities on alert (1 in the Algarve):
No additional restrictions currently apply for the following municipalities:
Aljezur , Almeirim, Almodôvar, Amares, Beja, Bragança, Celorico de Basto, Cinfães, Cuba, Entroncamento, Esposende, Évora, Freixo de Espada à Cinta, Mealhada, Miranda do Douro, Mirandela, Montalegre, Moura, Odemira, Oliveira de Azeméis, Pombal, Ponte de Lima, Póvoa de Lanhoso, Resende, São João da Pesqueira, Tomar, Torres Novas, Vale de Cambra and Vila Pouca de Aguiar
Praia da Batata in Lagos banned bathing yesterday after an analysis of the quality of the water, carried out by the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA), revealed microbiological values above the reference parameters, deeming the sea unsuitable for bathing.
After having received information from the Portuguese Environment Agency, which advised against bathing, the captain of Porto de Lagos indicated that the red flag be hoisted on the beach, prohibiting bathing.
"The situation is being monitored by the Portuguese Environment Agency and new water quality analysis will be carried out during today", explained the National Maritime Authority in a statement.
The ban on bathing will be maintained until the results of the water quality analysis indicate that the microbiological values are within the reference parameters.
Last Monday, the red flag was hoisted at Praia dos Pescadores, in Albufeira, after the burst of a pipeline to the sea. But the next day it was ready for bathers to return again.
The Algarve beach had been closed at the end of Monday afternoon, after detecting the rupture of a pipeline that sent waste to the sea. The National Maritime Authority announced that it had detected“the presence of brown water and an intense odour on the beach, with the red flag hoisted”, which indicates to bathers the ban on entering the sea. But on Tuesday the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA) guaranteed that “the microbiological tests carried out in the bathing water of Praia dos Pescadores indicate that there is no risk to the health of users”. With the results obtained, “the situation has returned to normal, today, July 20th”, he added.
The same source indicated that the rupture occurred in a “water supply pipeline” in the city of Albufeira and that “the water was drained to the beach, reaching the sea through the Pescadores beach pier, dragging away many sediments generated by the erosion that occurred in the area affected by the rupture”.
"The situation was promptly identified and resolved and, as a precautionary measure, the Maritime Authority raised the red flag on the beach until the analytical results of the samples proved that the water quality was compatible with the bathing practice", said the APA in a statement .
The Judiciary Police are investigating the fire in Monchique that broke out at 13:30 on Saturday. The flames have consumed more than 600 hectares in that municipality, and then spread to Portimão.
Authorities believe the fire started accidentally, they suspect that the origin was an improvised electrical connection in the annexe of an association, that used to be used as a kitchen.
The fire, that raged since Saturday in the municipalities of Monchique and Portimão, was declared extinguished on Sunday evening, having entered the surveillance phase at 19:00 after a day of aftermath, said the commander of operations.
At a press conference at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve, in Portimão, the Faro District Operational Commander for Civil Protection, Richard Marques, said that the crews would still remain on the ground to "consolidate the affected area", which amounts to "2000 hectares within a perimeter of 24 square kilometres".
On Sunday, and despite the intensity of the wind, which reached gusts of 50 kilometers per hour, “there were no great reactivations” and those that did exist were “promptly resolved by the devices on the ground: 426 operational, supported by 143 vehicles, four aircraft and five crawler machines.
Richard Marques revealed that the weather forecast for this Monday is "similar to Sunday", so "there will still be crews and resources on the ground throughout the day, reassessing and monitoring the situation," he said.
The Faro District Operational Commander for Civil Protection announced that “there were no registered “victims of the fire” and that the residents have already returned to their homes.
In all, "68 people" were evacuated from their homes, "21 spent the night at the Centre for Concentration and Support to the Population, in Portimão Arena", and "85 animals" were also welcomed.
Regarding the extent of the damage, the representative of the Guarda Nacional Republica present at the press conference revealed that it was "essentially damage to some warehouses supporting agricultural activity and some old vehicles", namely in the area of origin of the fire.
Captain Pedro Fernandes pointed out that the “primary damage” where the fire is thought to have started was in an annexe to a residence, but did not affect the main house.
At the press conference held on Sunday morning, the mayor of Monchique, Rui André, revealed that he had already carried out a survey of the damages in his municipality and that of the approximately 2000 hectares burned, made up of eucalyptus, forest, pasture, cork oak, stone pine and 25 hectares of agricultureal land.
There was no police presence either needed or visible at the passionate but well-behaved demonstration that took place yesterday morning, 18th July 2021, on the dam wall of the Santa Clara Barragem in the Lower Alentejo.
This beautiful lake is situated in one of the lowest population-density areas in Europe, so the turn-out of more than 500 concerned citizens, residents and visitors, Portuguese and foreign, young, old and in between, was impressive.
They came to protest against the vast quantities of water being pumped out of Santa Clara lake - 1,000 lts of water a second, 24/7.
The large numbers present show the depth of feeling aroused by the perceived rape of the surrounding countryside and its people at the hands of an intensive agricultural industry that has exploded in the Natural Park of the Costa Vicentina on the west coast over the last fifteen years.
The allocation of the precious resource that is the water in Santa Clara Barragem, (one of the largest man-made lakes in Europe by volume), is the responsibility of the Associação Beneficiarios de Mira, (or ABMira for short).
They sell over 90% to the intensive agricultural businesses while allocating the local population just 6%, (3% is sent to clean a mine to the east).
However, of the water that is extracted from the lake a full 40% is wasted either through leaks in the canals, (due to a lack of maintenance), or is left to run unused into the sea, (which can only be attributable to a lack of management).
As climate change starts to bite and the pendulum of the weather swings at an increasing pace, bringing devastating floods to some areas and heat bubbles to others, the south western corner of the Iberian Peninsula is finding that droughts are longer, water is scarcer, and, when the rain does come, it is either more feeble or a sudden fierce onslaught with rapid run-off - but there have been precious few fierce onslaughts over the last ten years.
The combination of less rainfall and excessive abstraction means that the lake is falling by 2 cms every day and is at its lowest level since it was inaugurated over 50 years ago – well, it’s not actually at its lowest level, as that was last year, when it was a couple of centimetres lower in July, but, following what was termed “um inverno chuvoso”, a “wet winter”, this is of scant concern save to further highlight the disaster unfolding before one’s eyes.
This intensive agricultural industry, for the most part foreign-owned and growing berries for export to northern Europe, is draining the only water resource of the area at an alarmingly expanding rate and there are plans afoot with permission already granted to further expand the hectarage of greenhouses – yes, it’s predominantly under plastic and heavily reliant upon agro-chemicals with attendant run-off pollution.
Moreover, being under plastic means that there is irrigation water needed even during the winter when one should see the lake being filled.
Among the residents of the area there is apprehension for the future as they watch their only water resource being drained before their eyes, there is sadness at the levelling and destruction of habitats in the Natural Park, (to protect which Portugal received EU funds), consternation at the government handouts and tax-cuts offered to the large agricultural companies and anger that these companies seem to be better represented in Government circles than the local population.
Surprisingly, in an election year, local politicians were markedly absent, and those that attended declined to speak publicly to the assembled people.
Unsurprisingly, there were no representatives of ABMira to put their case.
Perhaps both should have been here today - if only to witness the passion that this issue is arousing.
It is late in the day to start taking such a problem seriously, and there are no short-cuts to the solution, and I worry that, should a solution not be forthcoming, there is every reason to believe that demonstrations in the future will have a police presence that will be both visible and needed.
As one of the placards said in bold letters, “Mudaremos a nossa mentalidade”, “We have to start thinking differently”.
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