Northeast Spain faced with crippling drought

A massive drought in Catalonia is forcing this northeast region of Spain to turn to water rationing, seawater desalination, and recycling effluent from sewage treatment plants. Last year reservoirs dropped to 55% capacity in the region, but the Sau reservoir, normally the main source of water for the regional capital, Barcelona, is currently at 8%.

The water authority has put Catalonia at level 3 of its drought protocol, requiring the reduction of water for all uses, including slashing irrigation by 40%.

Many agricultural lands are parched, prompting the Federation of Agricultural Cooperatives of Catalonia to warn that regional harvests of olives, grapes, rice, and fruit are at "serious risk" and that reductions could be "very drastic," causing prices to skyrocket.


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