Algarve's water efficiency will also include schools

Contest challenges students from schools in the region to present projects of good water efficiency practices

Water efficiency will enter schools in the Algarve, through an unprecedented competition that aims to distinguish the best projects from schools in the Algarve with good practices to improve the use of water that exists in the region.

The first edition of “Water Efficiency at School” was launched yesterday, March 22, World Water Day, and arrives with the mission of “sensitizing and mobilizing school communities in the region to the need to monitor their water consumption, promoting at the same time, the implementation of best practices for their efficient use», according to AMAL-Community Intermunicipal do Algarve.

The entity that brings together the 16 Algarve municipalities is one of the partners in this initiative, in which the company Águas do Algarve, the University of Algarve, DGESTE – DSR Algarve, the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA) and ADENE – Energy Agency

Schools and their respective municipalities may submit their projects to competition until June 5, 2021, and registration must be made one month before, "through a digital platform to be made available in due course".

«The most recent climate projections for the Algarve region predict an increase in the frequency and severity of drought periods, with impacts on the quantity and quality of water resources, so it is urgent to establish water efficiency targets and time horizons for the main uses, and the school can function as a “laboratory” of good practices in terms of infrastructure and behaviors», illustrates AMAL.

Pimenta Machado, vice president of the APA, stresses that "the big bet in the coming years is to make water-connected systems more efficient", namely through the projects foreseen in the Algarve's Regional Water Efficiency Plan and in the PRR, such as the construction of a seawater desalination unit. AND

«At this time, last year, the dams in the Algarve only guaranteed the water supply for one more year. Currently, the situation is better, but it is a problem that the region will face in the near future,” said the same official.

A concern shared by António Pina. AMAL's president assured that “this is an issue that has been at the top of the agendas of the 16 municipalities in the region, since it is one of the main challenges we face: water scarcity. Therefore, we accepted to be partners in this initiative, because we believe that school communities are important vehicles of information».

According to António Pina, "we want to envision a more sustainable and resilient future for our society, hence initiatives such as these help to make communities increasingly aware of this issue as important as water."