THE Beninar reservoir contains only four cubic hectometres of water and is nearly dry.
The 68.2-capacity reservoir is the second largest in Almeria Province after Cuevas del Almanzora. Its present low level puts agriculture in Almeria’s Poniente area in a perilous position, warned Andrés Gongora, Provincial Secretary of the COAG growers and farmers association.
“Thousands of hectares of produce could be lost owing to lack of irrigation. In fact, several installations have not been able to water their crops for days,” Gongora said.
The planting and growing season is in full swing and the situation is now untenable, he added, and the Poniente Management Committee needed to meet immediately.
The situation had been caused by a combination of problems, Gongora said. “The Beninar reservoir has neither water nor sufficient storage capacity. There has been no rain, subterranean wells are exhausted and, worse still, brackish, while the Dalias desalination plant is still not operational.”