The Directorate General of Water Resources grants two concessions in Eivissa and Formentera to advance agricultural reuse and sustainability in the management of the water cycle

Mar 31, 2024 | Current affairs, Featured, Revista Lloseta, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The measures seek to optimise water use and address the specific challenges of salinity and irrigation on both islands.

The Directorate General of Water Resources, part of the Department of the Sea and Water Cycle, has granted two concessions to optimise water resources for agriculture on Formentera and Eivissa, implementing specific solutions to address the challenges of water availability and quality on each of the islands.

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Directorate General of Water Resources

For the Community of Irrigators of Formentera, has been approved the use of 263,696 m³ per year of treated water, coming directly from the effluent of the Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) located in the municipality of Formentera. This water will be used specifically in the agricultural plots managed by the Irrigation Community. The supply is intended to support agricultural irrigation operations on the island, contributing directly to local farming practices.

The concession has been granted with an initial term of ten years and the possibility of requesting an extension after this initial period, underlining the commitment of the Directorate General for Water Resources to support agriculture on the island.

In Eivissa, in order to bring the Sa Rota irrigation pond in Santa Eulària, built in 1995 and out of service since 2000, back into operation, the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and the Environment has received a concession to use 87,000 m³ of desalinated water during the winter months from the IDAM desalination plant in Santa Eulària des Riu. The aim of this proposal is to mix the desalinated water with the treated water from the Sa Rota reservoir, in order to correct the high level of salinity that hurts crop productivity. The use of desalinated water is understood to be a temporary solution until the joint actions of the Ajuntament and Abaqua, together with the collaboration of all the users, make it possible to reduce the salinisation of the water that reaches the sanitation and purification system.

Additionally, in view of the island’s drought situation and to address irrigation needs, the Directorate General has authorised an urgent and provisional supply of 2,000 m³/day of water from both the WWTP and the Santa Eulària IDAM. This temporary supply, granted for a period of two months, ensures that agriculture in Eivissa can continue without interruption while aspects of the definitive concession are being finalised.

The implementation of this concession is based on a favourable report issued by Abaqua, highlighting the viability and without compromising the supply to urban centres.

These concessions represent a commitment to the sustainable future of agriculture and the sustainable management of the water cycle in the Balearic Islands and represent the implementation of an essential infrastructure for the island of Ibiza, addressing critical problems such as water scarcity and water and soil salinity.

The Directorate General for Water Resources sets a precedent for innovative and responsible water management, promoting an effective method of combating salinisation problems, thus guaranteeing the long-term viability of local agriculture.