The Almeria Water Board has “positively” assessed the Spanish government’s decision to set a maximum price for desalinated water for irrigation. The spokesman for the Mesa del Agua de Almería, José Antonio Fernández Maldonado, explained that the decision taken by the Government “to set a maximum price of 0.45 euros per cubic metre of desalinated water in irrigation areas is acceptable for our agricultural model”.
Fernández Maldonado emphasised that “the representations made by the Almeria Water Board to the Spanish Government in particular, and to the other public administrations competent in this area, in defence of a fair price have finally been heeded”.
It should be remembered that the Mesa del Agua de Almería has been demanding for more than three years that the Spanish Government establish “as a matter of urgency” a maximum price of 30 cents for desalinated water for irrigation, as stated in the fourth additional provision of Law 1/2018 of 6 March. This additional provision, in force since 7 March 2018, states that “the Government will enable the necessary subsidy mechanisms so that the price of desalinated water for irrigation does not exceed 0.30 euros per cubic metre”.
Carry out the planned improvements in desalination plants
The spokesman for the Almeria irrigators also pointed out that “after this news, what we need now is for this work to continue and for the planned investments to be made in the different desalination plants that we have repeatedly mentioned, the expansion of the Poniente plant in Dalias, the expansion of the Carboneras plant and the start-up of the lower Almanzora plant in Villaricos, which has not been used for a decade”.
Also, emphasised Fernández Maldonado, “we must work on the installation of renewable energies associated with the desalination plants as this would reduce the price of the electricity produced in the generation cycle” because, continued José Antonio Fernández Maldonado, the situation for irrigation “is very difficult because we depend on electricity, the price of which has shot up, in addition to the rises in production costs which have also become quite expensive”.
The Almeria Water Board
The following social and economic agents of the province participate in the Almeria Water Board: FEDERACIÓN DE REGANTES DE ALMERÍA (FERAL), JUNTA CENTRAL DE USUARIOS DEL PONIENTE ALMERIENSE, JUNTA CENTRAL DE USUARIOS DEL ALMANZORA, JUNTA CENTRAL DE USUARIOS DE ADRA, AGUAS DEL ALMANZORA SA, COMUNIDAD DE USUARIOS DE AGUAS DE LA COMARCA DE NIJAR (CUCN), COMUNIDAD GENERAL DE USUARIOS DE AGUAS DEPURADAS (CGUAL), ASOCIACIÓN DE REGANTES DE ANDALUCÍA (AREDA), ASAJA, COAG, UPA, REGANTES DE ALMERÍA (REGA), ASEMPAL, COLEGIO OFICIAL DE INGENIEROS AGRÓNOMOS DE ALMERIA and COLEGIO OFICIAL DE INGENIEROS TÉCNICOS AGRÍCOLAS DE ALMERIA.