Associations demand to be heard about the lack of water in the Algarve

Sustainable Water Platform is made up of eight regional and national organizations

Odeleite Dam – Photo: Flávio Costa|Sul Informação

Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations must be involved in the search for the best solutions for the structural shortage of water in the Algarve, demand the regional and national movements and associations that belong to the Sustainable Water Platform.

Representatives of the eight organizations that make up this common front met to “analyze the water situation in the Algarve and find possible joint paths of intervention in order to demand transparency from policy makers and urgent actions to solve the problem”.

This meeting resulted in a common position, signed by the different entities, namely A Rocha, Água é Vida, Almargem – Association for the Defense of the Cultural and Environmental Heritage of the Algarve, CIVIS – Association for the Deepening of Citizenship, Faro 1540 – Association for the Defense and Promotion of the Environmental and Cultural Heritage of Faro, glocal Faro, Quercus – National Association for the Conservation of Nature and Regenerarte – Association for the Protection and Regeneration of Ecosystems.

The members of the Sustainable Water Platform «concluded that it is urgent to work together to maximize the finding of sustainable solutions that prioritize the rights of everyone, especially young people and future generations, to inhabit healthy ecosystems that protect the Natural Cycle and Urban Water Cycle».

"They also consider it essential to actively promote new behaviors as conscientious consumers, through a variety of actions and the adoption of innovative public policies, and the participation of citizens in decision-making, namely through public consultation and verification of the publication of official documents on compliance with laws and plans aimed at the efficient use of water in the region. They also demand that regional and national entities have them as full partners in this process”, reads the joint communiqué of these entities.

The eight associations and movements intend, in this way, «to publicize to the citizens, in a contextualized way, the problems, decisions and the advantages and inconveniences of each presented solution, contributing to the transparency of the functioning of our democracy».

The Sustainable Water Platform justifies its demands with the fact that it is the national and international official entities themselves «that state that there will never again be an abundant water resource in the Algarve that allows us to use it unlimited and that we must learn to live with it. that condition'.

And if, on the one hand, there are no solutions with a 100% positive impact, the answers that could be given, «in addition to technical, are also political».

For the members of the platform, it is very serious “that the matter is being resolved as if it were reduced to just an economic problem”.

They also criticize "the lack of consultation and the lack of dissemination of the opinion that civic and environmental organizations have on the subject" and the fact that "the dissemination of consumption data to the common citizen is not promoted, namely the current data of the Administration of the Algarve Hydrographic Region (ARH)/APA according to which, for example, losses in municipal public networks are 30% of the water distributed by that network».

On the other hand, it is not known "what public authorities intend to do to stop new plantations", when it is known that agriculture is the biggest consumer of mains water (60%) and water from underground aquifers (75%) .