Emergency drought measures could be lifted after recent rain

Catalan government to assess situation but wants to avoid having to back track in a few weeks

The River Ter pictured in Roda de Ter
The River Ter pictured in Roda de Ter / Lourdes Casademont
Catalan News

Catalan News | @catalannews | Barcelona

May 2, 2024 02:05 PM

May 2, 2024 06:40 PM

The emergency drought measures affecting Barcelona and much of Catalonia could be lifted after the heavy rains over the past few days. 

The Catalan government is to assess the situation of reservoirs before deciding if it shuold downgrade the drought emergency in the Ter-Llobregat system. 

The Climate Action minister told journalists on Thursday that they will wait for a few days so that the water from the recent rain and snow can enter the reservoirs. 

David Mascort explained that they would also analyze the water consumption expected over the summer at a meeting of the interdepartmental drought commission next week. 

"What we won’t do is lift the emergency phase just to end up back in it two weeks later. We have to evaluate what would be the water consumption over the summer, how much water does the environment need, and how much irrigation needs," he said.


One scenario the government wants to avoid is lifting the restriction now, before having to backtrack in a few days or weeks. They would much prefer to work medium-term scenarios, Mascort explained.

Floating desalination plant 

In April, the Catalan government announced it will install a floating desalination plant off the shore of the Port of Barcelona and purchase 12 mobile desalination units for the northern region of the Costa Brava to combat the severe drought in the area. 

The floating desalination plant in Barcelona will produce 14 hm3 of water per year, equivalent to 6% of the consumption of the Barcelona metropolitan area. 

It will not be operational until Barcelona enters the next drought emergency phase, which is not expected until at least October.