As we celebrate World Environment Day, it emerges that up to 300 towns and villages are still dumping sewage in rivers and the sea off Andalucia
ANDALUCIA has been rocked by damning figures regarding the state of its sewage-disposal system.
Some 300 treatment plants are still urgently needed to prevent the dumping of raw sewage in rivers or the sea.
Despite an EU law banning this practice from January 2006 over 15 per cent of settlements – including Nerja, Coin and Mollina – continue to pollute the region.
Now, finally after the European Commission threatened to take disciplinary action, some 200 million euros have been set aside to rectify the problem.
Junta Environmental Advisor, Cinta Castillo, pledged that by 2012 ALL Andalucian municipalities can expect to have sewage plants installed – even though this will be six years too late.
Under new projects so far signed off, both Almería and Granada provinces have been set aside 26 million euros each.
In addition, Jaén will receive 31 million euros and Cádiz will also be given four million euros.
The total figures for Huelva, Cordoba and Malaga, where 200,000 people alone are currently without access to sewage-treatment plants, have not yet been published.
Despite Castillo’s assurances that the problem is restricted to just the smallest municipalities, the big Guadalhorce valley towns of Alhaurín El Grande, Cártama and Pizarra still dump dirty water.
Yet even when treatment plants have been completed, they have still run into huge difficulties.
Although built in 2004, the plant at Rincón de la Victoria has been unable to cope with the increase in sewage during the summer months.
Most problematic of all has been the plant at Ronda that was completed in 2007 after costing more than 21 million euros.
There are still 18 other towns in the Serrania area that dump contaminated water into the Guadiaro and Genal rivers.