The measures were announced at the end of a meeting of the Permanent Commission for the Prevention, Monitoring and Accompaniment of the Effects of Drought (CPPMAES) by the ministers of the Environment, Duarte Cordeiro, and of Agriculture, Maria do Céu Antunes.
Citing data from the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere (IPMA), referring to April 15, the ministers said that 18.6% of the country is already in severe drought and that 10.1% in extreme drought.
The severe drought affects the south of the country and a small part of the northeast of Trás-os-Montes, and the extreme drought affects the south of the country, warned the Minister of Agriculture.
At the CPPMAES meeting, he explained, measures were taken or maintained for the southern region, Alentejo and Algarve, one of them being, in the Mira area, banning new installations of permanent crops and “greenhouses and the like”.
“We are entering a difficult period again”, being on April 15 “with a situation that already looks very difficult”, warned Maria do Céu Antunes.
Regarding the reservoirs, while the majority are able to safely guarantee this year's irrigation campaign, there are several in the south looking at contingencies for human supply and agriculture.
Maria do Céu Antunes referred to the hydro-agricultural developments of Campilhas and Alto Sado (which includes Campilhas, Fonte Cerne, Monte Gato and Monte da Rocha), which are “in a more difficult situation, with a contingency plan” that may lead in some cases to banning the use of water for irrigation.
In the case of Silves, Lagoa and Portimão, a transfer of water from the reservoirs of Funcho to Arade is foreseen and the application of the contingency plan.
Maria do Céu Antunes noted that after the drought situation is decreed, measures can be created to help farmers.