Thursday, July 7

The Tajo Confederation assures the Board that there will be no supply problems this summer

Valdecañas Reservoir, on the Tagus, at low levels last year. / TODAY

The regional executive says that the agency has given him guarantees that the situations generated by the discharges of last year will not be repeated

Celestino J. Vinegar

“We left the meeting calmer than when we entered.” The Board, in the words TODAY of Álvaro Jiménez, general director of Planning and Hydraulic Infrastructures, believes that the Tagus Hydrographic Confederation (CHT) has given sufficient guarantees to the regional Administration so that this summer «the management problems » from last year that was evidenced in a sharp drop in the Valdecañas dam that left residents of the area without water for a few hours. Or the problems in the waters of the Tagus as it passes through the Monfragüe National Park or at the end of the Alcántara dam in Almonte.

The Board, headed by the Minister for the Ecological Transition, Olga García, held an interview in Mérida this Tuesday afternoon with the president of the CHT, Antonio Yáñez. Apart from reiterating the “concern” of the Board about the situation of the dams, he demanded “certainties” from the hydrological agency in several aspects. The fundamental, which the Government of Fernández Vara takes for granted, is that inappropriate discharges will not occur, whether to comply with the ecological flow of the Albufeira agreement or for hydroelectric production, which indirectly cause supply problems to populations.

“The fundamental thing is guarantees that the human supply will be developed with the water that we have available. And those guarantees have been transferred to us by the Confederation, ”says the Director General of Planning.

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“Last year there was a management problem. If it had not occurred, the reservoirs (in the Extremadura basin of the Tagus) would have presented a better appearance at the end of the year. This 2022 the problem is that we have less starting water to face these months without rainfall. That is why it is even more important to know how to manage this reality well”, explained Jiménez.

That environmental protection is also preserved for the birdlife in the reservoirs and the minimum ecological flow are other aspects that have been transferred to the CHT, as well as “the problems of odors and the amount of water when the Tagus passes through Monfragüe”.

TODAY has contacted the Tagus Confederation to have their assessment of the meeting. The body has responded that it will answer the request of this newspaper in the next few hours.

Last year, the Government modified the Water Law. The new norm establishes that the basin organization must establish at the beginning of each hydrological year a series of parameters for reservoirs with a total capacity of more than 50 cubic hectometers whose main uses are not supply, irrigation and other agricultural uses. This measure affects the swamps with hydroelectric plants, which have old concessions that gave priority to energy production. In the region are the Alcántara, Cedillo, Torrejón and Valdecañas reservoirs, all of them operated by Iberdrola.

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