The severe drought suffered by Catalonia, the worst since rainfall data existed (1905), caught more than half of the 65 municipalities with more than 20,000 inhabitants without an already approved emergency plan, as the Government has required since 2020. Specifically, there were 14 that had not submitted them, 13 were unfavorable and another 14 were in process.
Only 23 (including Barcelona) had it approved.
After the entry into the exceptional phase last Tuesday in the Ter-Llobregat system (which supplies Barcelona and Girona), which increased the restrictions to a total of 5.9 million people, the counselor Teresa Jordà (Climate Action), threatened non-compliers with a penalty.
Since Jordà's warnings, three municipalities (Badalona, Banyoles and Sant Feliu de Guíxols) have already submitted their plans to the Catalan Water Agency (ACA).
More than half of the large Catalan municipalities do not have their drought plans ready
Sources from the Barcelona Metropolitan Agency (AMB), with powers in water management for the 36 municipalities that make it up, explain that "the few municipalities that are missing [in presenting the plans] are preparing them," they say.
Until this Friday, the AMB municipalities that had yet to be presented were Cerdanyola del Vallès, Cornellà, Molins de Rei, Ripollet and Viladecans, according to the latest update from the Catalan Water Agency (ACA).
Other municipal sources explain to this newspaper that in the last week the WBA had put pressure on non-compliers in the face of "a threat of sanction."
Apart from these municipalities in the Barcelona Metropolitan Area, Calafell, Esparreguera, Figueres, Franqueses del Vallès, Valls and El Vendrell still remain to present the regulations against drought.
A spokesperson for the AMB prefers not to speak of "pressure", but that this Administration has reminded the municipalities "of the need to have a plan of these characteristics".
He adds, in addition, that they have no record of any disciplinary proceedings being opened by the Generalitat against any of these municipalities.
ACA sources detail that the Government has already opened "a fortnight" of files, without specifying which ones or in which geographical areas.
Catalonia activated the drought plan in October 2021, but the limitations on the water supply have tightened in recent months;
The AMB approved the Strategic Plan for the Comprehensive Water Cycle (PECIA) on February 28.
The objective of the plan is to ensure the supply of water throughout the metropolitan territory within 30 years and has an approximate cost of between 2,100 and 2,400 million euros.
The AMB assures that the PECIA will reduce the water deficit in the metropolitan regions -currently estimated at 130 hm3 per year- by 2050. One of the planned projects of this new plan is the construction of a water treatment plant (ETAP) in the Besòs to take advantage of the resources of this river.
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