The Secretary of State for the Environment, Hugo Morán, has stressed the need to “anticipate our adaptation to climate change” and in a “responsible management of water” to be able to face extreme meteorological phenomena and situations of “water stress” that “are beginning to be a serious problem.”
Morán made these statements during his speech in the presentation of the summer balance and the autumn forecast that the Meteorology Agency (Aemet) has drawn up, where he stressed the need for citizens to attend to the warnings and predictions of this service “to turn it into a useful tool “and gain efficiency in the face of phenomena derived from climate change.
The Secretary of State has called for the “need to be responsible in the management of a scarce resource such as water” and has stressed the importance of “anticipating a scenario of water stress” which, he assured, will “relocate” the Guadalquivir and Guadiana basin “in a serious resource management problem” if the situation is not reversed in the coming months.
In this sense, he highlighted the role played by Aemet in the second cycle Flood Risk Management Plan, because it “incorporates multidisciplinary information” when predicting risk situations caused by natural phenomena such as torrential rains or situations of water stress.
This “anticipatory system”, together with the European Recovery Funds, will make it possible to modernize the prediction system and surveillance networks of the Aemet to “have a larger and more reliable volume of data every time”, added the Secretary of State. .
During the press conference, Jorge Olcina, Professor of Geography at the University of Alicante, pointed out that regarding the management of impacts due to extreme rainfall in Spain, it is necessary to “pursue a sensible and prudent management of the territory” in a context of climate change that will accompany us for the next decade.
Olcina has emphasized that Spain has a very good forecast of meteorological warnings and a very good management of the emergency, but, in his opinion, there is a lack of territorial management in a country where around 2 and a half million people live in a flood risk area, of which half a million are in high-risk areas.
For Olcina, this process increased considerably with the last boom real estate covering from 1998 to 2008, when the occupied flooded area increased; for example, in areas between Alicante and Murcia the increase has been around 150 percent, a high figure compared to what has been built.
The expert has stressed that part of the problem lies in the fact that the administrations involved do not make an adequate control in the planning of the territory in terms of cartography: “We play with human lives and the responsibility is high on the part of the managers of the territory” , it is finished.