Sunday, March 26

Drought in Extremadura: The ministry warns that most Guadiana reservoirs will have restrictions

Cijara Reservoir. / Juan Antonio Bermejo

The water reserve in the basin “is very negative” and the weather forecasts do not foresee notable changes in trend in the coming months

Extremadura is still in a situation of hydrological drought. The Ministry for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (Miteco) points out in its latest report on the state of the reservoirs in Spain that the general situation of the water reserves in the Guadiana basin “is very negative” and the weather forecasts do not They foresee notable changes in trend in the coming months, “so the scenario being handled is that it will be necessary to restrict irrigation consumption from most of the reservoirs in the basin.”

Despite the rains in March, in its latest report corresponding to the end of February it reflects that the situation in the Guadiana basin “continues to be problematic, especially in its upper basin, and is also spreading to the western area” . Thus, the Territorial Scarcity Units (UTE) of Mancha Occidental, Jabalón-Azuer, Gasset-Torre de Abraham, El Vicario (all of them in the upper basin), and Tentudía maintain the ‘Emergency’ scenario; and another 4 UTEs are in the «Alert» scenario. The remaining UTEs in the demarcation are in “Prealert” (6) or “Normal” (6).

The March rains give the reservoirs a break, although the drought continues

The document, collected by Europa Press, emphasizes that the 2020/21 hydrological year ended in the Guadiana with a very low volume stored in the reservoirs (2,709 hm3), which represents 29.3 percent of the maximum capacity). As of February 28, the volume has increased very slightly, to 2,886 hm3 (30.4%); and slightly exceeds 31 percent today.

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Los Molinos Dam

With these data, the report highlights in terms of water supply that resources must continue to be mobilized from Torre de Abraham to Gasset and from Los Molinos to Llerena, as well as continuing to mobilize resources from the emergency wells set up by some of the Consortium’s municipalities. of Campo de Calatrava to guarantee the supply of the municipalities of the Consortium (La Vega del Jabalón Reservoir) and continue with the research actions and enabling new sources of resources.

Tentudia, in emergency

The situation in the Tentudía reservoir, which is in an ‘Emergency’ scenario, «makes it necessary to start up drought wells that support the supply to this Commonwealth.

Regarding irrigation, he insists that the general situation of the reserves in the reservoirs is very negative, and the forecasts of the State Meteorological Agency do not foresee notable changes in trend in the coming months, so the scenario that is handled is that It will be necessary to restrict irrigation consumption from most of the reservoirs in the basin.

Thus, in the Eastern Zone “it will be necessary to establish restrictions in the irrigable areas of El Vicario, Torre de Abraham and Gasset if there are no significant contributions in the coming months.”


In the Western Zone, the situation in the Alange-Barros and General System joint ventures, which concentrate most of the basin’s irrigation demand, means that, according to currently available reserves, “it is necessary to establish restrictions on irrigation in all the irrigable zones that depend on this UTE, especially severe in the Orellana Irrigation Zone (57,000 hectares), where according to the latest forecasts only 24 percent of its concession will be available. In the rest of the irrigable areas of this UTE they would have 54 percent.

Adjustment of extractions

On the other hand, in the UTEs in which the irrigation is mainly of underground origin, the adjustment of extractions has been foreseen through the Annual Extraction Regimes, with the condition that if the Emergency/Alert situation is reverted to a of Prealert in those UTEs, the proposed adjustments will be lifted.

Therefore, at the end of February, 12 UTEs were in an Emergency scenario, the same as the previous month (7 in the Guadalquivir demarcation and 5 in the Guadiana), and 27 UTEs were on Alert, 7 more than in January (11 in the Guadalquivir district, 5 in the Duero district, 4 in the Guadiana district, 3 in the Ebro district, 2 in the Tagus district, and one in the Miño-Sil and Júcar districts).

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