IT IS feared the Costa del Sol’s farmers could lose millions of euros in revenue after water cuts in Axarquia following droughts have damaged mango production.
According to media reports, producers are expecting further irrigation restrictions at the end of August, in addition to the current ban on watering one day a week. Reportedly these cutbacks, coupled with current high temperatures, are already damaging crops, risking economic losses to the multi-million-euro sector.
Businessman Miguel Garcia, claimed, “we face a catastrophic year if the weather situation does not change. This summer will bring serious consequences unless the current situation is drastically alleviated.”
The President of Asaja, Baldomero Bellido, echoed his concerns, saying, “This is a very worrying situation. The water available is being depleted at the rate of one cubic hectometre per month in the eastern zone. Urgent measures are needed because subtropical fruit is undoubtedly one of the economic pillars of the agricultural sphere.”
Since April, Axarquia’s farmers have been banned from watering plants one day a week due to low water levels in the La Viñuela reservoir, a first since its opening in 1986. The Water Board is now considering investing hundreds of millions of euros to help Malaga’s towns with their ongoing drought problems.
Officials are looking at various solutions, including diverting water supplies from the Guadalhorce reservoir or building overflow reservoirs to house excess water for times of low supply.