Algarve consumed less water in June compared to 2022, says minister

Minister Duarte Cordeiro was this Saturday at Zoomarine, in Albufeira

The Minister for the Environment and Climate Action, Duarte Cordeiro, revealed yesterday, Saturday, in Albufeira, that there was a reduction in water consumption in the Algarve, in June, compared to 2022, something that he associates with the ongoing campaign to “raise awareness about reducing water consumption”, which he believes will already be bearing fruit in the Algarve region.

According to information provided by the APA (Portuguese Environmental Agency), outside the Inauguration of the Wastewater Recycling and Reuse System, associated with the WWTP (Wastewater Treatment Station) in Albufeira, at the Zoomarine amusement park, in the Algarve “there is a tendency to reduce consumption in May and June” compared to last year.

Savings at regional level, in June 2023, compared to the same month of 2022, was «200 thousand cubic meters».

Despite this, those responsible for the APA at national and regional level warned, the trend is still to be consolidated and, in the accumulated result for 2023, compared to last year, consumption is «slightly higher» this year, something that can be justified by the fact of «April was very hot».

On the same occasion, Duarte Cordeiro spoke of the Government's objective of multiplying by four, by 2026, the reuse of wastewater in the Algarve, namely to supply golf courses.

“This is an example of an objective that the Algarve has to multiply by four the capacity to use recycled water for its uses”, said Duarte Cordeiro.

This objective, like the Sul Informação already realized, includes the use of treated wastewater for increase water availability in the Bravura Dam irrigation perimeter.

According to figures cited by the minister, the southernmost region of mainland Portugal consumes around 2,1 cubic hectometers of wastewater and it is intended that by 2026 that number will rise to more than 8,0 cubic hectometers.

“This implies adapting and carrying out works on a set of WWTP, which are being carried out by Águas do Algarve and, therefore, here, more than the impact it may have, it will allow, for example, if all goes well, that all golf courses adapt, or at least all those that have the capacity to respond to recycled water”, said Duarte Cordeiro.

The government official said that “recently” commitments were signed with two more golf courses in the Algarve “to have recycled water responses”.

On the other hand, the Minister of the Environment devalued the increase in the price associated with the use of wastewater: "I must say that water, at this moment in Portugal, is not significant for the competitiveness of any business", he argued.

In any case, according to the minister, “the variation in [water] costs will not be significant, at least for businesses that intend to be healthy”.

“If they are unhealthy businesses that really depend on the cost of water to survive, these businesses […] will find it difficult to survive…”, he added.

As for the new Zoomarine Wastewater Recycling and Reuse System, associated with the Albufeira Poente WWTP, it represented an investment of over 130.000 euros, which includes a tertiary (biological) treatment plant.

The company foresees annual savings of “many hundreds of thousands of liters of water in watering gardens, nurseries and the like”.

In 2014, the Algarve amusement park had already invested in the construction of a 4,7 kilometer pipeline that allows the capture (and subsequent return) of sea water.

“With the new system, water savings are now made not only in salt water (for zoological habitats, rehabilitation centre, public swimming pools and slides), but also in fresh water (watering gardens and similar )”, emphasizes Zoomarine.



Read some more!
A strong region needs a strong press and, these days, the press depends on its readers. We make all Sul Infomação content available free of charge, because we believe that it is not through barriers that the public approaches responsible and quality journalism. Therefore, your contribution is essential.  
Contribute here!