06/27/2021 at 9:07 AM CEST
The Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Luis Planas, and the president of the State Society of Agrarian Infrastructures (Seiasa), Francisco Rodríguez Mulero, signed two collaboration agreements this week for the execution of a series of actions aimed at the modernization of Spanish irrigation systems that add up to a public investment of 332 million euros. If the contributions of the private initiative are added, a total of 500 million euros will be mobilized, “The largest public investment in sustainable irrigation in recent decades & rdquor ;, highlights the ministry.
One of these agreements involves the implementation of investments for the improvement of the efficiency and sustainability of irrigation. These actions are included in the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan (PRTR) of the Spanish economy, which, in this first phase, covers 45 performances with a public investment of 260 million euros. With private contributions, it will amount to a total of 325 million euros.
The second collaboration agreement signed is to carry out works contemplated in the planning of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA) of irrigation declared of general interest, with a public expenditure of 72 million euros, which will mobilize a total investment of executed work of 175 million euros. This program includes 14 performances to modernize 29,000 hectares of arable land.
The plan for the improvement and efficiency of the sustainability of irrigation by the recovery mechanism will have a second phase from 2022 with a public investment of 303 million euros and 48 new actions. The total of this plan adds 563 million public funds, which with 20% of private collaboration will mean an injection of 704 million euros and will involve the modernization of more than 100,000 hectares of irrigation.
The projects included have been selected at the proposal of the autonomous communities, in accordance with the requirements of environmental sustainability, energy efficiency and implementation of new technologies required by the European Union for the application of recovery funds. Being financed with these, the works must be completed in 2026.
“The biggest investment in decades”
Luis Planas has highlighted that it is “the largest public investment in sustainable irrigation in recent decades & rdquor; and that it will represent a very important advance not only in environmental sustainability, resource efficiency and modernization, but also in the improvement of productivity and profitability of the agricultural sector.
Spain has the largest irrigated area in Europe, with 3.8 million hectares, and this mode of cultivation has been, according to Planas, a key tool for the competitiveness of the agricultural sector due to its ability to generate value. “Whoever wants to dedicate himself to the land, has to work the water & rdquor;, has assured the minister, and has specified that 23% of the cultivated area in Spain is irrigated, but it generates 65% of the final agricultural production.
The most efficient irrigations account for about 77% of the irrigated area, with more than 2.9 million hectares, of which almost 2.1 million hectares correspond to the localized irrigation system and about 885,000 hectares to the group constituted for aspersion and automotive. Another 888,094 hectares are still irrigated by gravity.
Planas has reiterated the Government commitment to modernizing irrigation, as evidence that they are the first actions of the resilience plan, and has ensured that “sustainable irrigation together with digitization and generational change are the three pillars on which the model of agricultural activity will be based in the near future & rdquor; .
Original note from the Ministry: https://www.mapa.gob.es/en/prensa/ultimas-noticias/el-gobierno-activa-el-plan-de-modernizaci%C3%B3n-de-regad%C3%ADos -with-a-first-package-for-332-million-euros-of-investment% C3% B3n-p% C3% BAblica / tcm: 38-564222
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