We’re in week four of the Portugal News’ revamped layout. We hope you like the new look and content…
… As a responsible thriving renewables Company, we are increasing efforts in awareness. Not just for our solutions, but our local and regional environment.
We’re focussing on water in the Algarve-Alentejo borders…
… This is a huge issue and has prompted a number of excellent articles in the papers over the last 5 years, but worryingly, authority perhaps, isn’t reading them.
Drought affects 95% of the country. But worse is the Algarve/Alentejo Mira Dam irrigation system. A report in August 2017 suggested the channel, built in the 1960’s to supply 2,500 farmers from Vila Nova de Milfontes to Rogil (with water), is losing water at “2 million litres per hour”. This dates back to 2008.
No wonder there are water restrictions in the Alentejo. And boreholes are running dry. Talking about frightfully expensive desalination projects, when this amount of water is being piped straight into the sea makes no sense!
While locals can hear the water rushing away, the authorities don’t seem to. What exacerbates the problem is that the farmers do not irrigate at the same time. This means 800 kilometres of pipes are kept open. But water conservation is a MUST. Perhaps constructing holding channels would work, which could then pump water back for reuse? There is little sense building more dams to capture and hold water, if the leakage continues.
But it gets worse. Aside the horror wastage, is has been mooted that as much as 55% of water is lost in the pipes leading from it. The environmental association, ZERO, added that Portugal’s plan for water efficiency had been left in a drawer for four years in August 2017.
Ministers responsible for this problem will certainly feel more pressure. Orange growers, particularly, and others in the citrus trade are calling for action, as agronomy technicians warn of the plight. The sector puts a value of €145 million in the Algarve, producing some 365,000 tonnes from the harvest in 2019.
Please ensure you help the Algarve and Alentejo by limiting the amount of water you use at home and work.
10 WAYS SAVE WATER AND MONEY ON METERED WATER
1. Eliminate leaks – repair all taps, hoses and irrigation pipes in your garden
2. Set timers on sprinklers for evening, night or early morning use – water evaporates rapidly at other times
3. Keep your grass longer is the hot months – this helps the grass roots and soil stay moist for longer
4. Hit your targets – don’t water driveways, pavements and roads – ensure your piping is accurate
5. Don’t wash the car with a hose – use a bucket, since doing this saves 450 liters
6. Use a bowl in the kitchen and utility sink – the plants and herbs love gray water
7. Buy barrels – pipe off the roof and collect free rainwater
8. No half loads – fill the washing machine, make it count
9. Dishwasher prep – soak dirty plates, pots and pans in a bowl, then water the flowers
10. Water-saving appliances – buy efficient washing machines and dishwashers