New Faro-Olhão water treatment plant “ready by 2018”

A new water treatment plant (ETAR) serving as many as “113,000 people” in Faro, Olhão and São Brás de Alportel is to be constructed by 2018, says regional water authority Águas do Algarve (AdA).

The project was announced last year (click here) but only now has the tender for construction work been decided.

Representing a €13.9 million investment, the ETAR will be built by the Oliveiras SA/Acciona Água SA consortium in the same place as the Faro “Nascente” wastewater plant at Sítio da Garganta, 2.5km east of of the Algarve capital.

The Faro “Nascente” and current Olhão “Poente” plants have been criticised by local borough councils, shellfish producers and gatherers, and environmentalists for Ria Formosa’s pollution issues.

One of the goals of the new ETAR is to tackle this perennial problem in the estuary, once and for all.

In a statement, AdA has conceded that the existing plants are “too small” for the amount of water they treat, and not up to “today’s quality standards”.

Nonetheless, Lusa news agency says the ETAR project still needs a thumbs up from the Ministry of the Environment before construction work can begin.

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