MADRID – The heavy rains of the past week in large parts of Spain were more than welcome in the drought-stricken country. Many reservoirs were at a critical point and water reserves continued to dwindle every day.
Therefore, the announcement of a series of Atlantic fronts with storms and heavy rain that would pass over Spain was considered very good news. Thanks to storms such as Aline and Bernard, after five months (19 weeks) of consecutive declines, the water level in the reservoirs increased again last week. This is the largest increase since the last week of January.
As the Ministry of Ecological Transition indicates, Spain’s water reserve is currently 35.6% of the total capacity. The reservoirs now store 19,945 cubic hectometres of water, an increase of 577 cubic hectometres in the last week (corresponding to 1.0% of the current total capacity of the reservoirs). The maximum occurred in Vigo, where 233.7 litres per square metre (l/m2) were collected.
Drought problem is far from solved
However, it is important to note that this increase in stored water does not come close to solving Spain’s drought problems. Clear evidence is that this 19,945 cubic hectometres (35.6%) is significantly lower than the average recorded for this week over the past ten years: 26,853 cubic hectometres (47.9%). However, the current figure is higher than the 17,826 cubic hectometres (31.81% of capacity) that was measured around this time last year.
River basins that have gained the most water
Looking at the different catchments, the Galician coast catchment has increased the most: from 53.4% to 62.1% in just one week. Also notable is the modest recovery of two river basins that were in critical condition: that of the Guadiana (from 23.5% to 24.3%) in Extremadura and that of the Guadalquivir (from 17.9% to 18.4% ) in Andalucia.
Unfortunately, there are also catchments that have decreased in terms of water reserves over the past week. This concerns the internal river basins of Catalonia (from 20.7% to 19.9%), the Mediterranean basin of Andalucia (from 22.5% to 22.2%), and the Segura river basin (from 22.9%). % to 22.3%).