Águas do Algarve supplies recycled water to irrigate the Castro Marim & Country Club golf courses

In Castro Marim, Águas do Algarve and Castro Marim Golfe & Country Club today signed an agreement to supply ApR – Water for Reutilisation to the courses of this golf resort, thereby enabling the more efficient management of hydric resources in a region that is increasingly experiencing the impacts of water scarcity.

This agreement comes in the wake of the conclusion of the first phase of the “ApR – Water for Reutilisation Lifting and Supply Infrastructures for the Vila Real de Santo António Wastewater Treatment Plant” project run by Águas do Algarve and designed to enable the application of treated wastewaters to irrigating the golf courses existing in the northern zone of this council, thereby seeking to contribute to ensuring the balance between supply and demand and fostering resilience against drought in keeping with forecast climate change scenarios.

This project involved the installation of a chlorine disinfection system and building a ApR lifting station and the pipeline connecting with two points of delivery, specifically the Castro Marim and Quinta do Vale Golf Courses.
With the supply of ApR by Águas do Algarve, Castro Marim Golfe & Country Club will replace the around 450 000 m³ of water consumed in the process of irrigating and maintaining its golf courses to ensure a better balance in overall supply and the availability of this hydric resource.

“We are aware of the need to be increasingly sustainable due to the climate changes and the water scarcity experienced in recent years and hence our commitment to this project has been total right from the very first moment” highlighted David Martins, General Director of Algarvelux, SA. “We believe that this represents the future and we want to be at the front of the peloton in keeping with the quality of the golf course and the Algarve as a destination!”

The application of ApR comes in the wake of other measures taken by this tourist resort, specifically watering at night, installing an intelligent irrigation system, collecting rain water in lakes, the installation of meteorological stations, reductions in the areas irrigated, for example on the fairways and in the rough, the planting of more appropriate grass and indigenous species and shrinking the areas cultivated, among others. 

Involving investment totalling 1.5 million euros, with financing from POSEUR, the project enables the annual utilisation of around a million cubic metres of surface water through ApR, with the wastewater treatment plant now with the capacity to provide for other delivery points, whether for golf courses or agricultural irrigation or for urban purposes, such as washing streets and irrigating green public areas.

For Águas do Algarve, the signing of this agreement represents an important step forward in its objective to bestow greater resilience on the region’s water supply system. The measures planned guarantee an increase in the average annually available water of 17 million cubic metres in 2023 alone, and with an accumulated annual increase amounting to 62 million cubic metres in 2026 throughout all the Algarve region.

As regards the production of water for reutilisation in the Algarve, there are investment plans foreseeing 23 million euros through to 2025, raising output capacity from 1.4 to 8 million cubic metres/year, with 71% for application to golf course irrigation. 

António Eusébio, the Águas do Algarve President, emphasised that “the search for new origins, such as production via ApR and desalination, is a priority to meet the impacts of climate change in the Algarve, which lowers the water available in dams and aquifers. However, alongside this rise in supply, we also need to strengthen actions taken to reduce water consumption and promote hydric efficiency. Water scarcity is a global challenge requiring everybody acts.”

Algarve Launch of the “Water is life. Don’t waste it” Campaign

To better cope with the impacts of water scarcity already impacting on certain regions of mainland Portugal, under the slogan “Water is life. Don’t waste it”, the AdP - Águas de Portugal Group joined the APA – the Portuguese Environment Agency and ERSAR - the Regulatory Entity for Water and Waste Services, with financing from the Environment Fund of the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Action, to launch an awareness campaign around the reduction of water consumption through practices that foster efficient usage.

The campaign now launched in the Algarve, the region currently most afflicted by drought and water scarcity and that sees its population double every summer, is run by Águas do Algarve, AMAL – the Intermunicipal Community of the Algarve and the Algarve Tourism Region and counts on the support of different hotel and restaurant associations across the region who are pooling efforts to appeal to residents and national and international tourists not to waste water.

The campaign “Water is life. Don’t waste it” stresses the sheer importance of water and makes an appeal to everybody to adopt behaviours capable of contributing to the good usage of this resource: “A running tap can get through 12 litres of water in just 1 minute. If each person wastes 1 minute of water per day in Portugal, that’s 120 million litres of water, enough to meet the basic daily needs of a million people. Water is essential to life and deserves all of our attention. Be more aware and avoid any unnecessary consumption.” 

The campaign takes place on a national scale across various phases with campaigning and activities stepped up in those regions most critically impacted by water scarcity, specifically the Alentejo and Trás os Montes. 
With the objective of ensuring the broadest dissemination of these awareness messages, the campaign materials are publicly available at Portal da Água

03 of July of 2023