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The continuous dry weather is threatening the harvests of Andalusia

Spanish regions cut water consumption amid worst drought in 40 years

Spanish regions cut water consumption amid worst drought in 40 years

The situation has already threatened the harvest in places like Andalusia

The summer of 2022 has been marked by a series of heatwaves and drought lambasting Western Europe. Spain is reportedly experiencing its worst drought since 1981 and amid fears of failing crops, regional and municipal governments have decided to restrict water consumption.

According to the Spanish Government, the water reserves of mainland territory were at 40.4% of the total capacity of reservoirs and dams on Tuesday. However, this median figure hides the fact that in some regions, such as the Guadiana river basin, which passes through Castilla-La Mancha, Extremadura and Southern Portugal, that percentage stood at only 26.2% of total capacity.

Overall, water reservoirs have not been this empty during the past decade.

Water scarcity – an increasingly common issue

The lack of water has led regional governments and municipalities across the country to adopt measures to control consumption, including cutting off the supply during the night, consumption limits per person in each house and banning showers on beaches, washing cars, watering the garden and filling private swimming pools.

The situation particularly affects the regions of Galicia, Andalusia and Catalonia, but there are measures to cut water consumption that will be adopted throughout the country.

In the case of Andalusia, the dams and river basins are already below the necessary capacity to supply the population in the coming months, according to regional authorities.

The only good news in that context is that, according to a recent report published on Statista, the average daily consumption of water per person in Spain has been decreasing since the start of the 21st century.

In the early 2000s Spaniards consumed up to 171 litres of water daily to meet their various needs. In 2018, when the survey ended, that figure had dropped to 132 litres, showing an adaptation and increased awareness about water conservation.

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