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Image of the cascade of water at the source of the Guaro river. José Torrubia
Drought crisis

Watch as Guaro river breathes life into 'dead' Axarquía reservoir for first time in eight years

The levels in La Viñuela will mean that the water restrictions that have been in place in districts of Periana including Pollo Pelao, La Muela, Cortijo Blanco and La Estación, among others, can be lifted

Eugenio Cabezas

Axarquía

Tuesday, 2 April 2024, 12:45

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One of the most striking images of the heavy rainfall in Malaga province over Easter week was taken early on Monday 1 April at the source of the river Guaro in Periana. After eight years of waiting, water flowed abundantly into what is considered the main contribution to La Viñuela reservoir in the Axarquía, on the eastern side of the province.

La Viñuela, which supplies 14 towns and villages in the Axarquía, had already added around 12 cubic hectometres and on Monday morning it was at 16.21 per cent of its capacity, with 26.64 cubic hectometres stored, compared to the 16.52 it had the previous Monday.

"The glass has filled up," mayor of Periana Rafael Torrubia told SUR on Monday, visibly "pleased" with the change after the rain, which has left 172mm in the town centre in the last seven days and more than 260 in neighbouring Zafarraya, in Granada province.

Positive news

The water levels in La Viñuela will mean that the water restrictions that have been in place in districts of Periana including Pollo Pelao, La Muela, Cortijo Blanco and La Estación, among others, can be lifted. Local farmers will also be able to have resources in the coming months, after two summers without water from the Guaro river for their vegetable, citrus, peach and subtropical farms.

"It is all positive news, now we are going to be able to supply water without using the well pumps, because it comes out on its own, so we will save electricity for a few months," said Torrubia, who pointed out that most of the water will end up in La Viñuela."If ten hectometres have already entered the reservoir, I calculate that another ten more may enter in the coming weeks," he predicted.

He also provided a series of explanations of the geology of the area and the Zafarraya sinkholes based on the explanations given by Periana resident Juan Miguel Ortigosa, who is an expert on the subject.

"Geologically, the Llano de Zafarraya area has a subsoil of fractured limestone which forms a deep aquifer. When it rains, the water saturates the aquifers and fills the water table", the mayor explained.

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