COINCIDING with the anniversary of the September 2019 storms, Pilar de la Horadada’s agricultural growers were asked to recycle unwanted plastics.
A recent mayoral decree was expressly aimed at the area’s polytunnels that occupy 500 hectares of Pilar land, 90 per cent of which grow peppers for export. The remainder produces flowers.
The town hall communique pointed out that the greenhouses’ heavy-duty plastic needs renewing approximately every three years. If thrown away, the plastic – together with hundreds of metres of unwanted drip-irrigation tubing – blocks streambeds and storm drains, increasing the risk of catastrophic flooding, Pilar’s mayor Jose Maria Perez pointed out.
This is usually carried out at the end of the growing season, when there is more likelihood of the torrential rains brought by the Gota Fria or the infamous Upper-level Isolated Depression (DANA).
“Plastic waste management has been well-managed ever since the municipality began greenhouse production at the beginning of the 80s,” Perez told the Spanish media.
“Nearly all of the waste is eliminated, but not all of it,” the mayor admitted.
Perez, who grew flowers commercially until he took over as Pilar mayor after the 2019 local elections, warned that the Policia Local, who kept watch year-round to prevent robberies, would be on hand to ensure compliance with the town hall decree.