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DESALINATION PLANT WORKING AT FULL CAPACITY AS CONSUMPTION INCREASES DURING DROUGHT
Municipal water company AMJASA has temporarily suspended supply to Teulada and Benitatxell

Monday 6th July 2015

javeamigos.com | JAVEA NEWS · WATER SHORTAGE

With rainfall remaining scarce and consumption increasing as high season kicks in, the municipal desalination plant has been forced to work at full capacity for the past few weeks, producing some 27,000 cubic meters of water a day, and has temporarily suspended supply to the neighbouring municipalities of Teulada and Benitatxell. The first few days of July have already matched demand of last August which was the last and, until this summer, only time the plant has worked at full capacity. The situation has been made even more serious with levels at the Ocaive wells located near Pedreguer which complement the supply of drinking water in Xàbia also dropping to below minimum and forcing extraction to be stopped from two of them.

Daily consumption of water in Xàbia is already about 2,500 cubic metres higher than 2014. To guarantee supply, the desalination plant usually needs to work overnight to produce between 3,000 and 4,000 cubic metres of water but this has not been possible this year. This extra water would normally help ensure supply in case of failure or emergency. Since the plant has been unable to achieve this, AMJASA has temporarily suspended the daily transfer of some 2,000 cubic metres to Teulada and Benitatxell. The supply will be restored once the levels of the wells recover. (In the 1990s, the Ocaive wells dried up which led to the construction of the desalination plant.)

In order to raise awareness of the situation, the Ayuntamiento de Xàbia and AMJASA have launched an awareness campaign to reduce the private consumption of water by encouraging residents and visitors to follow simple advice to save water:

1. Don't water gardens during daylight hours to prevent evaporation.
2. Don't fill pools.
3. Check your water meter for leaks.
4. Avoid unnecessary waste.

Following this advice would also mean significant saving for consumers since the rate that is applied in Xàbia is progressive, i.e. as consumption rises, so do the prices for supply.

At the end of last month, the state meteorological agency AEMET issued a warning that the Marina Alta region had seen less than half the usual rainfall since last September and between March and May this year, Xàbia received just 32.5 litres per square metre of rainfall, some 78% less than normal. The region is now one of the first areas in Spain along with the north of Tarragona, Salamanca, Ibiza and La Palma. The situation is made no better by the news that AEMET predicts that the current heatwave is expected to continue at least until mid-July with temperatures significantly above the maximum average for the time of year. This has been caused by a body of extremely hot air sweeping in from the Saharan Desert which has not only affected Spain but also France and the UK. If you think it's hot in Xàbia, consider those in Madrid where temperatures are reaching as high as 50°c in the street, thanks to a combination of the ground heating up and the traffic, prompting Cayetano Torres, AEMET delegate in the city, to quip that "it's so hot it's scary, scary enough to get out of Madrid".


javeamigos.com | JAVEA NEWS - WATER SHORTAGE


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