Bloco de Esquerda wants to see Tavira's bar cleared «urgently»

BE's Parliamentary Group presented a draft resolution in the Assembly of the Republic

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The Left Block wants the Government to move "urgently" towards removing the silt of the Tavira dam and the main channels of the Ria Formosa that give access to it.

The Parliamentary Group of BE presented a draft resolution in the Assembly of the Republic which recommends that the Government “proceed, as a matter of urgency, to digging up the Tavira Bar and the access channels to the ports of Santa Luzia and Cabanas, safeguarding environmental values ​​in presence".

"The poor navigation conditions of the Tavira bar are very harmful to fishing and tourist-maritime activities, endangering the safety of vessels, as well as those of the crew and passengers," said the Blocist deputies, among whom João Vasconcelos, elected by the Algarve.

«In the port of Tavira there are 253 licensed fishing vessels, to which there are a few more in the ports of Cabanas and Santa Luzia, whose fishermen depend on local fish resources and good navigation conditions to carry out their activity. There is also a recreational dock with 70 berths and regular transport of people to the island of Tavira, which, in 2015, totaled 338 thousand transported passengers. At low tide it is not possible to operate with the vessels and even at high tide and with stronger swell the risks of accidents increase”, they add.

This leads to the bar being frequently closed due to silting, namely “when there is a strong swell”.

«Even in some periods of the summer, the bar is closed, preventing dozens of fishing boats from going out to sea, in addition to the numerous tourist and sport fishing boats. With the low tide, fishermen have to wait about two hours to enter Santa Luzia and another two hours to leave, which makes navigation unsustainable», says BE, in the draft resolution it presented.

“The severe silting of the navigation channel between posts 9 and 10 and at the entrance to the bar forces vessels to carry out risky maneuvers, in a circle, to enter and leave the site, putting the safety of crews and passengers at risk. The strong siltation of the navigation channel and the luminous points found on land mislead navigation, which can result in serious accidents, especially at night, or in situations of poor visibility and greater maritime agitation».

Although this is an old problem and the silting process is "increasingly accelerated", only "small remediation dredging in this area of ​​the Ria Formosa" has been carried out from time to time, but with manifestly insufficient effects to ensure safe navigation of vessels'.

“The deep and effective desilting of the dam and adjacent canals has been successively postponed by the government, which is leading to an almost total blockage of the dam. Although a 2018/22 Port Dredging Pluriannual Plan was drawn up by the National Civil Engineering Laboratory, the government has successively postponed the background work at the Tavira bar. The dredging plan foresees annual maintenance dredging in the order of 40 thousand cubic meters in that bar, dredging every five years of 12 thousand cubic meters in the Cabanas channel and 16 thousand cubic meters in the Santa Luzia channel. The last dredging of the Tavira bar and the Cabanas and Santa Luzia channels took place more than five years ago, in 2015-2016», also revealed the Left Block.