La Viñuela reservoir. SUR
Reservoirs in Andalucía continue to lose water and hold less than 20% of their combined capacity
Drought crisis

Reservoirs in Andalucía continue to lose water and hold less than 20% of their combined capacity

At a national level, the water reserve in Spain is close to double that of the region, reflecting the severity of the drought which suggests possible new restrictions being on the horizon

José Luis Piedra


Wednesday, 20 September 2023, 16:46


The reservoirs in Andalucía are continuing to register a decrease in the volume of water held - despite the recent rains - and are currently below 20% of their total capacity, increasing the likelihood of future restrictions.

The region's main water reserves are currently at 19.7% of their holding capacity, with 2,191 cubic hectometres, some 41 less than they stored a week ago. The water stored is 4.4% lower than last year.

According to the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge, the water stored in the reservoirs of the Guadalquivir basin has been reduced by 0.4% to 18.7% with a total of 1,501 cubic hectometres, while that of the Andalusian Mediterranean basin is down to 24.7% of capacity, with a total of 290 cubic hectometres.

The reservoirs in Huelva fell by three cubic hectometres to 131, with their reserve at 57.2% of their capacity, and those in Cadiz lost four hectometres to drop to 269, with a water level of 16.3%.

At a national level, the Spanish water reserve is almost double that of Andalucía, with 36.8% of its total capacity and it currently stores 20,623 cubic hectometres of water, decreasing in the last week by 111 cubic hectometres, or 0.2%.

Further water restrictions are a distinct possibility for Andalucía. The Junta has made it clear, however, that any water restrictions in municipalities would be addressed by the drought committees, with the involvement of the local councils.

The Minister for Sustainability, the Environment and the Blue Economy and spokesman for the Andalusian government, Ramón Fernández-Pacheco, said that "if the drought situation worsens in the coming months, the drought committees will be convened, with the involvement of both the affected sectors and the local councils".

The Junta's spokesperson stressed that ultimately the municipalities are responsible for water supply. He added that "the Junta would discuss with them any restriction measures within the framework of the drought committees, as the Andalusian government "will not be indifferent" to a problem of this magnitude.

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