Drought latest in Spain: Major tourist destination lifts emergency measures

THE Catalan government has lifted emergency drought measures after recent heavy rainfall provided a sufficient boost to the region’s reservoir levels.

Previously, over 200 municipalities linked to the Ter-Llobregat water system had been placed under restriction since February as water levels dwindled with Catalunya in the midst of its worst drought in recorded history.

Restrictions included a ban on filling private swimming pools and the use of public showers, with monuments such as the iconic water fountain at Montjuic forced to be turned off.

However, heavy rainfall last week, which included the region’s wettest day in almost four years, has provided a much-needed boost to water levels with the Ter-Llobregat water system, which serves Barcelona, reaching 24.8% of capacity. 

READ MORE: Swimming pools latest: Andalucia government hopes town halls will make ‘responsible’ decision because ‘the drought is NOT over’

The government’s drought committee warned residents that although the drought may have eased off, it is not over. Credit: Cordon Press

Two months ago, the system was operating at under 15% of its capacity.

For over six million residents, the Level 1 emergency level has been downgraded to ‘exceptionality’.

Patricia Plaja, the regional government’s spokesperson, said: “The increase to the levels of the reserves allows us to modify the restrictions we have experienced in the last three months, leave the emergency status and lift some restrictions, although the drought is still not over”. 

David Mascot, the Catalan climate minister, assured residents that the current state of ‘exceptionality’ would last until the start of 2025, even if there was no more rainfall this year. 

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