Also announced was a Water Pact for the Algarve
The Portuguese government has decided to increase the capacity of the Algarve’s future desalination plant, which is expected to be completed in 2026.
The announcement came on Tuesday without many more details during the Minister of Environment and Climate Action’s speech at a conference to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Order of Economists.
“We have made the decision to increase the capacity (of the Algarve desalination plant) given the discussions that we have had in the region,” Duarte Cordeiro said.
The minister also announced the creation of a Water Pact for the Algarve which will involve the regional development commission (CCDR Algarve), the Algarve municipalities association (AMAL), irrigation associations and water users.
The goal will be to “help adequately manage the additional available water that we are generating,” he said.
Desalination plant part of €200 million package
The desalination plant is one of the biggest projects of a €200 million investment to improve the Algarve’s water efficiency and management.
Around €45 million of the package is going into the desalination plant, while around €75 million will be used to carry out improvements and “increase the resilience” of dams,
Around €35 million will go to “reducing water losses in the urban sector,” while €17 million will be invested to reduce “water losses and improve efficiency in the agricultural sector.”
A further €5 million will be used to improve water management by strengthening and modernising surveillance systems, while €23 million will go into treating and reusing wastewater.
The money – coming via the EU ‘bazooka’ officially named the Recovery and Resilience Plan – will be used to minimise water losses, improve water management and “increase the amount of water available in the Algarve.”
However, the government is willing to increase the investment if the current package proves unable to “respond in a satisfactory way” to the region’s needs.
By Michael Bruxo