“We may face a complicated situation, because the summer months are when the main economic activities in the Algarve, agriculture and tourism, also have their highest consumption”, said Pedro Valadas Monteiro.

Drought persists

According to the official, the rain that fell in the region in March and April “improved the outlook”, but “did not solve the problem” of the lack of water in the Algarve, because although there is no longer any part of the region in extreme drought, the drought persists.

“We are still in drought and the critical period in terms of water consumption is approaching, which also coincides with the period in which precipitation will no longer fall”, he noted, stressing that farmers are trying to save as much water as possible.

According to the regional director of Agriculture, although March was a very rainy month, this did not solve the problem of drought because water reserves “were very low”, both at the level of the dams and the existing water in the soil.

“The dramatic situation [farmers] live in today is when the time comes when the water requirements of the crop increase and the artificial supply of water has to be done, through irrigation. If there is no water available, how are these crops going to be irrigated?”, he said.