RADIOACTIVITY has made water in one Malaga village ‘unfit for human consumption’ leading to a ‘state of emergency’ in the local council.
The Junta’s Ministry of Health declared the water ‘unfit for human consumption’ last Friday, December 15.
It comes after Aguas de Narixa, which manages the water in Nerja and surrounding areas, found ‘excess natural radioactivity’ in the local drinking water of Maro, a small hamlet.
According to the water company: “The detected radioactivity was caused naturally by certain minerals in rocks and soil through which the Maro spring flows.
“Lower than normal levels of permeable rocks known as aquifers has probably influenced the increase in radioactivity.”
The some 800 residents of Maro cannot use the water for cooking or drinking but it can be used for cleaning and personal hygiene.
The restrictions only affect the village, not Nerja itself, as the affected water comes from a Maro spring.
Local leaders will lift the restrictions when radioactivity is below the legal levels.
In the meantime, Nerja council has declared a ‘state of emergency’ and begun urgent works to bring drinking water to the village.
Infrastructure Minister José Alberto Tomé, has announced €600,000 in emergency funds for the project.
The works were already underway, parallel to the N-34 motorway, but have been accelerated given the lack of drinking water.
There is no fixed end date for the work, but officials say the issue will be resolved in a ‘reasonably short period’.
Until then, the water company is providing free drinking water.
Distribution started on Friday and residents can collect up to five litres per person per day from the ‘centro de usos múltiples’.
Water can be collected from 10:00am to 12:00pm and from 17:00pm to 19:00pm.
Meanwhile, Proteccion Civil is bringing water to the elderly and vulnerable.
The issues come after years of drought in Andalucia and many water restrictions in the area.