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The Junta de Andalucía addresses the drought situation in the province together with the Mesa del Agua (Water Board)

The Department of Agriculture is working to continue to anticipate problems in the difficult situation of the agricultural sector.

The Territorial delegate of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, Aránzazu Martín, together with the General Directors of Planning and Water Resources, Fernando Delgado, and Agricultural and Livestock Production of the Board, Manuel Gómez, has held a meeting with members of the Water Board to address the exceptional situation of drought in which the Andalusian Mediterranean Basin and, especially, the province of Almeria is.

Aránzazu Martín has highlighted the “difficult situation” in which the province of Almeria is, “so it is necessary, as is doing the Junta de Andalucía, go ahead as far as possible with works and exceptional measures to alleviate the effects of drought, which not only affect the agricultural and livestock sector, but also the supply of municipalities”.

In this sense, the delegate has referred to the emergency works that are being undertaken in the Almanzora Valley “that will allow a greater guarantee of supply to the region with resources from the Negratín-Almanzora transfer and desalinated water”. A work, which has an expected term of 9 months and has a budget of almost 7 million euros.

For his part, the Director General of Agricultural and Livestock Production, has highlighted the measures to be developed from the Ministry in order to alleviate the drought in the sector, referring especially to those affecting the incorporation of young farmers.

During the course of the meeting, the various members of the table have expressed the existing needs in each of the regions, asking the Ministry the momentum in the concession files that may encourage the use of alternative resources, while demanding the support of the Andalusian administration for the Ministry of Ecological Transition echoes the difficult situation that has especially the Almanzora region, with the cutting of the transfer of Negratín and that will occur shortly also with the Tajo-Segura. Therefore, they demand the Government to “make available to irrigators Almeria surplus water from the desalination plant in Torrevieja urgently.

In this sense, from the Directorate General of Planning of the Board, has highlighted “the constant meetings” that the Ministry has held with the Ministry to demand “to take advantage of the drought decree of the community to address urgently the necessary works, as well as those who have pending as is the Desalination of the Bajo Almanzora”.

Bonus of desalinated water

Similarly, Fernando Delgado has explained how the Andalusian Government, with the counselor Carmen Crespo at the head, has repeatedly moved to the Ministry “the need to use surplus water, as well as the bonus of desalinated water.

In this regard, the members of the Bureau have positioned themselves unanimously in pointing out the need for the Ministry to address “the bonus of desalinated water throughout the national territory”. In fact, state legislation, through the Fourth Additional Provision of Law 1/2018 of urgent measures against drought, establishes the obligation of the Government of Spain to enable the necessary subsidy mechanisms to establish a maximum price of desalinated water of 30 cents.

Therefore, irrigators have demanded that the Ministry “comply with the law and establish a fair price for desalinated water”, since at present “it can reach costs of up to almost three euros per cubic meter, which makes it unaffordable to access this water due to the very high production costs generated.”

 

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