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Your Algarve News Highlights - December 16th 2023

Your Algarve News Highlights - December 16th 2023

Dear Reader,


This will be the final newsletter of 2023, as our office is now closed until the New Year. The next newsletter will be on January 6th, 2024.


The ADN team wish you a very Merry Xmas and Happy New Year!


A big thanks for your support throughout 2023.


Here is your weekly news overview…

Algarve and Spain unite to combat the increasing amount of invasive seaweed

The Municipalities of Lagoa in the Algarve and Tarifa in Spain, are working together to mitigate the negative impact that the invasive marine alga, Rugulopterix Okamurae, has had on the tourism sector.


The seaweed has caused huge losses to tourism, given the amount of algae that has appeared on beaches in the south of Portugal and Spain.


A delegation composed of president Luís Encarnação, vice-president Anabela Simão, councilor Mário Guerreiro and technicians from the Lagoense municipality, travelled to the city of Tarifa, in Spain, near the Strait of Gibraltar, last month to learn about all the work carried out by technicians from the Spanish municipality of Tarifa, because the area has been faced with the problem of invasive algae since 2018.


The visit focused on the study and data collected so far by the Municipality of Tarifa, the measures taken to mitigate the impact of the invasive species and the fate to be given to it.


This meeting also served to enable the Municipality of Lagoa, which has been facing this problem for two years, to share its experience and the difficulties they have had in dealing with this phenomenon.


According to the municipality, this partnership aims to “carry out a more complete and detailed study of this invasive species, so that it can be shared with the various entities seeking a transversal solution to the problem, such as the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA ), the Algarve Regional Coordination and Development Commission (CCDR), the University of Algarve and all municipalities in the Algarve region”.



Irrigated farmers ask for better use of the water we have

Irrigated farmers have appealed for better use of the water the country has, believing there are solutions to its scarcity in the Algarve, a region where reserves are at extremely low levels.


“There are more alternatives than what is said. There are solutions, and they are very close by. We are not exactly in need of bringing water from Minho to the Algarve”, the president of the National Federation of Irrigators of Portugal (Fenareg), José Núncio, told the Lusa news agency.

The president of the federation - which represents around 28,000 irrigating farmers, more than 97% of national organized irrigation - spoke to Lusa on the sidelines of the Irrigation Meeting 2023: XIV Jornadas da Fenareg, which came to a close in Alcantarilha, yesterday.

“Even close by there is potential to use water. We have a Guadiana that has water, we have an aquifer that is the second most important aquifer in Portugal, which also has exploration possibilities”, he assured, adding that “if there are areas that are over-exploited, other areas have exploration potential”.

The Algarve is the region that faces the biggest water shortage problem in the country, with water reserves in the reservoirs of the hydro-agricultural projects of Bravura (08%) and Arade (15%), in the western (western) Algarve, at extremely low levels.

The president of the Portuguese governors asks that we “look at all the solutions”, because “there is not a single solution”, but rather “a 'mix' of solutions”, arguing that there will have to be “reserve solutions for very drastic situations” .

“We have to study case by case, we cannot just complain that the water may be poorly distributed. Portugal has water, it has a lot of water and we have to have the capacity to manage and use it ”, said José Núncio at the end of the two day meeting.

At the round table that took place on the first day of the meeting, solutions for irrigation in times of scarcity were discussed, namely surface water and the perspective of increasing storage capacity.

As for groundwater, strategies for recharging aquifers were discussed, as well as irrigation with water for reuse and the use of deficit irrigation.

The construction of new reservoirs or the transfer of water flows from the North to the South of the country were other possible solutions to the chronic problem of water shortages in the Algarve that were mentioned during the meeting.

At the closing session of the meeting, the Secretary of State for Agriculture of the Government in office since Friday, Gonçalo Rodrigues, stated that “the path must continue to be followed”. He highlighted “the continued work” of the executive, “in an attempt to find solutions and respond to the needs of those in charge, trying to meet their expectations and trying to find solutions”.



Faro is the least polluted city in Europe

According to data from the European Environment Agency, the best air quality in Europe in 2021 and 2022 belonged to Faro,  Europe's least polluted city.


COP28, the Climate Change Conference of the Parties, in Dubai, is currently underway, bringing together representatives of signatory countries to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.


One of the main objectives of COP28 is to advance the development of the energy transition and accelerate the progressive elimination of fossil fuels, which are the main sources of greenhouse gases and atmospheric pollutants. Based on data from the European Environment Agency between 2021 and 2022, the least polluted European city was Faro.


In addition to their impact on the climate, fossil fuels such as coal, oil and gas also present significant pollution challenges; for example, burning it emits fine particles (PM2.5). According to the World Health Organization (WHO), prolonged exposure to these particles can trigger or worsen various health problems, such as hypertension or diabetes.


Although the WHO has recommended a maximum limit of five micrograms of PM2.5 per cubic meter of air for long-term exposure since 2021, most cities in the European Union (EU) substantially exceed this limit.


Many of the cities most impacted by PM2.5 are located in Poland, a country still heavily dependent on coal, which emits a considerable amount of fine particles when burned. Northern Italy, due to its geography and concentration of industrial activities, remains one of the most polluted regions in Europe by fine particles, resulting in the presence of two Italian cities at the top of the list.


However, based on data from the European Environment Agency compiled by the Toute l'Europe website, ten cities in Europe remained below the recommended level of fine particles by the WHO. In the period 2021-2022, Faro stood out as the least polluted European city in the study, with an average concentration of PM2.5 in the air of just 3.7 μg/m³, with Funchal being the fourth least polluted European city. In 2nd and 3rd place were two Swedish cities, Umeå (3.9 μg/m³) and Uppsala (4 μg/m³).


Least polluted European cities



Faro: Ryanair flight to Tenerife forced to make emergency landing

A Ryanair flight between Manchester and Tenerife, was forced to make an emergency landing at Faro Airport this morning, due to a problem identified in one of the engines.


The Algarve Sub-regional Emergency and Civil Protection Command confirmed that 164 passengers were on board during the incident.


“The landing was carried out successfully”, stated a source from the Sub-regional Command. The expertise of the Ryanair crew and the effectiveness of the emergency services were apparently crucial in ensuring that the incident did not result in more serious consequences.


The airport remained on red alert for approximately half an hour, which was later lifted as emergency services left the scene.


The quick response of the authorities was evident with the presence of firefighters, the Republican National Guard (GNR), INEM , the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority and the Municipal Civil Protection Service at the scene.



Increasing number of vacant houses are being occupied by immigrants

There are more and more vacant or closed houses that are being occupied in Faro, and other locations in the Algarve, without the owners' knowledge.


According to a report by SIC Notícias, most situations involve immigrants whose income means they can't afford to rent.


Vacant and closed up houses, without water or electricity are being occupied by what is claimed to be dozens of immigrants.


SIC Notícias reported that a 49 year old Moroccan man is living in a vacant house, and when the owner was notified of this by a neighbour, he said he didn't mind, “because the house will be demolished soon”.


“The situation has been repeated in Faro and in several other locations in the Algarve. Most are vacant houses, without water or electricity. But it's not always so. A house that had been empty for about a year, still had these services connected, because it was about to go into construction. It was the high electricity bill that made the owner go to the place to investigate”, say the SIC television channel. Seven individuals lived in the house, five left in a cooperative manner when asked, while the remaining two only left the place after police intervention. The owner claims to have been the target of threats after this incident.


The PSP asked how many illegal occupations of property in Faro there had been in recent months, but said the data was unavailable, however they indicated there were numerous cases and not just in Faro.



Portimão: Man injured in accident on a boat is rescued by helicopter

A 53 year old man was rescued by an Air Force helicopter at the weekend, from a trawling vessel in Portimão. (video)


According to the Air Force statement , “in need of emergency medical care, at 1:35 pm, Air Force support was requested to rescue the patient so that immediate transportation to a hospital unit was possible. Ten minutes later, the EH-101 Merlin helicopter, from Squadron 751 – 'Pumas', took off from Air Base No. 6 in Montijo, towards the fishing vessel that was located 19 km off the coast near Portimão”.


After the successful rescue of the vessel, the patient was transported to the Faro hospital heliport.


See the video here: https://www.facebook.com/PortugueseAirForce/videos/1091681765344676/


More news next year!




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The ASB 2023 Christmas Charity Lunch

On Friday the 8th of December, I had the pleasure of hosting the Algarve Senior Bikers Christmas charity lunch, this is an annual event for members and friends of the ASB which raises funds for the Gaivota home for children and teenagers in Albufeira. 



The New Lisbon Airport

A technical group surveyed a few locations for the new Lisbon airport. This issue has been going on for some 30 years, there are dozens of surveys, many insisting on investments around €7-9 billion.



The waiting game... Diagnosis: Cancer Stage IV

Destination: Death? Portugal and its healthcare system is surely costing peoples lives… On 1 June 2023 a tumour was found on my ovary by my gynaecologist in Loule Hospital (privately paid for).



The Portuguese World Exhibition (O Mundo Português)

Portugal had a pavilion at the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne in Paris in 1937. A participant in the decoration of the Portuguese pavilion with azulejos was the Algarvian Maria Keil.  She went on to design the azulejo decoration for the Lisbon metro in the 1950s and 60s.



Names and Their Meanings

Unless you created a vaccine for it, the last thing you want is to have your name associated with an illness or disease.  Or a pandemic.  Or a war, no matter which part of Korea or Vietnam you live in.  Will anyone ever choose Wuhan as a holiday destination from now on?



Currency Market Update - 13th December 2023



In a surprising turn of events, the UK economy shrank by 0.3% in October, causing the value of the British pound to decrease. Economists had predicted a steady or slight growth of 0.1% for the month.



Christmas in the Sunny Algarve

While most of the rest of Europe wraps itself in thick coats and gloves, the Algarve welcomes Christmas with a warm embrace and radiant sunshine.





Sea to Sky Homes Featured Properties - Dec 2023

This month's selection of Sea to Sky Homes new listings and interesting properties for you from each of the areas we cover: Silves, Lagoa, Alvor, Lagos and west.





Luxurious 6 Bedroom Villa In Fonte Santa, Quarteira

Explore the pinnacle of luxury living with Spotblue.com's exclusive offering of a six-bedroom villa, situated on a sprawling 2-acre estate in the prestigious Fonte Santa.




Stunning, fully refurbished 2 bed golf towhouse - Budens

Stunning refurbishment! This 2-Bedroom Townhouse is at the heart of Quinta da Encosta Velha, on the sought after golf resort of Parque da Floresta, walking distance to the village of Budens, and a 5 minute drive to Salema beach.



3 bedroom, 3 bathroom apartment with swimming pool - Lagos

Large 3 bedroom apartment for sale, located close to the beaches, town, supermarkets and restaurants of Lagos.






For Sale: Studio apartment with sea views and parking, Carvoeiro

This 1st floor Studio apartment with sea views and parking is perfectly located within a short walk to Carvoeiro beach, and all amenities.





Magnificent Moorish Style Villa a Short Distance to Benagil Beach, Carvoeiro

This impressive 5-bedroom home is located at the end of a peaceful road, just two kilometres from the beach and a short drive into the popular seaside village of Carvoeiro. Influenced by the Moorish history of the Algarve, this spacious home has many beautiful decorative features including domed ceilings and intricate tile murals, and boasts many luxuries such as 20m pool, sauna, Turkish bath, wine cellar, bar, gym, jogging path and even a football pitch.



Ferragudo: Spacious, Modern Apartment a short walk to the beach

New, Unique opportunity: hereby we present an exclusive new apartment with modern design and elevator located in the center of the village of Ferragudo within only a few minutes from the beach.




AIRC Annual Golf Event Raises €7000

On a beautiful sunny day in late November, Almancil International Rotary Club held their 6th annual golf event at the Dom Pedro Victoria Course, Vilamoura.  As always, the event was expertly organised by Club members John Slatter and Bill Browne.  More than 100 people participated in the tournament. 



What a year for Streetlife… another milestone reached… 1000 sterilisations

Associação StreetLife is a non-profit organization based in the East Algarve that helps families on low incomes get their dogs sterilised… they also support their local animal shelters sterilise the strays and the abandoned dogs they take care of before they are hopefully rehomed. 



Celebrate Christmas and New Year's Eve in Style at Vila Vita Parc

Vila Vita Parc is preparing an unforgettable celebration for this year's festive season, under theme Vila Vita Fever, with a carefully curated programme commencing on 6th December with St. Nicholas’ Day lasting until Three Kings Day on 6th and 7th January 2023.



LIFE LINES - Exhibition of drawings by Tara Ezaguy Bongard, opens Nov 4th

An exhibition of drawings by Tara Ezaguy Bongard opens on November 4th, running until January 2nd 2024.





Charity Fun Day - Dec 16th, Albufeira

Algarve Network for Families in Need will be hosting a fun day on Saturday 16th December 2023 from 12 noon until 4pm at Al-Gharb Coffee Roasters in Albufeira. All funds raised on this day will go directly to our Glasses for Children Project.



Algarve History Association Events - December 2023

A reminder about our music event on Friday 8th December, together with news of the programme for Nikola Meeuwsen on 28th December.  And Peter´s presentation Before the Braganças.



Festive Charity Swims in Armação de Pêra 2023

Come and join us for a fun-filled Charity Swim, have a dip in the ocean and help to raise money for local families in need, on Christmas Day, 25th December, 2023 and New Year’s Day, 2024 at 10.30- 12.00hr on the beach at Armação de Pêra - meet on the beach in front of  the Holiday Inn Algarve Hotel.




To see more info about events coming up in the next few weeks, check out

My Guide Algarve's event calendar


For latest information and advice regarding crime, wildfires and the Covid-19 pandemic, visit the

Safe Communities Portugal website


Everything you need to know if you are moving to, living in or visiting the Algarve.

AngloInfo website


‍Have a great week, from the Algarve Daily News team!


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