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Work by Emasa and the Junta to recover wells in the Aljaima area Ñito Salas
Malaga launches work to reopen old wells near airport which could provide 40% of city's water needs
Drought crisis

Malaga launches work to reopen old wells near airport which could provide 40% of city's water needs

The work will be carried out by the Junta de Andalucía at a cost of 15.4 million euros and should be completed in 10 months

Chus Heredia

Malaga

Wednesday, 17 April 2024, 11:26

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One of the main assets of Malaga city and the wider province against the drought has been the recovery of old wells and boreholes. For some months now, Emasa has been supplying the network with 200 litres per second from Aljaima and Fahala (on the banks of the Guadalhorce as it passes through Cártama). Next month it will activate another 200 litres per second in the same area and, in the coming months, 600 litres per second but in the area of Bajo Guadalhorce, nearMalaga Airport. The work involves not only the recovery of six old wells, but also work on pipes and reservoirs up to the Atabal water treatment plant, which will also be prepared to treat water of poorer quality at source. The works will be carried out by the Junta de Andalucía.

Deadlines

Work is expected to be completed by the start of 2025. They will be vital as projections for the start of next year indicate the reservoirs that supply Malaga city will be at crisis level again. It will be vital to count on these 600 litres per second, which would represent 40% of the city's consumption. And, if we count the wells mentioned above in Cártama, the figure could exceed 1,000 litres per second, two thirds of what the city needs.

Technical characteristics

This investment of 15.74 million euros corresponding to the Junta's fourth drought decree is key. These were wells that were important during the drought of 1995, but then fell into disuse. The city council has located 18, but, to start with, the initial work will focus on six: Puente del Rey, which has three wells; in Perales, two wells, and another at Malaga Airport.

The work will take 10 months and will completely reopen the wells as they used to be when they were functional. In the case of the pipelines, the existing sections will be fixed, and new routes will be laid where necessary.

Water extraction and ozone treatment

The water will be extracted from the wells by means of 220 kW submersible pumps with a working point of 100 l/s each and a head of 100 m.c.a. (the pressure exerted by a 100-metre column of pure water), which will pump the water to the existing reservoir in the Puente del Rey area.

This facility, currently disused, will also be improved both structurally in terms of its installations. In addition, the machine room will be fitted out to house the equipment for pump water to the El Atabal DWTP treatment plant.

These flows are expected to contain more organic and marine matter as they are part of the final area of the river. The water will therefore be treated in the Atabalplant, which will reinforce the ozone treatment system it already has - a project is being drafted at a cost of 600,000 euros.

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