The problem of water use in rural areas of Southwestern Spain: A local perspective

Manuel Pulido*, Jesús Barrena-González, Alberto Alfonso-Torreño, Rafael Robina-Ramírez, Saskia Keesstra

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Water is a key strategic resource, particularly in Mediterranean climate-type areas with impermeable rocks and shallow soils like Southwestern Spain. The region of Extremadura is commonly known by its large surface occupied by big dams (30% of water dammed in Spain) although this theoretical abundance of water does not hide other problems of use. In this study, we have interviewed 132 people from the municipality of Arroyo de San Serván in order to know what the problems related to water use are, especially those that concern local people the most. Regarding the use of water at home, 90% of interviewees spend less than 60 EUR per month for water and their mean degree of satisfaction about the service is 3.7 out of 7. The reason for this low value can be the excessive content of calcium and bad taste according to 82.1%. Therefore, 64.2% of people do not usually drink water from the tap. Around two thirds of these local people usually buy water in the supermarket or drink filtered water. Concerning agricultural activities, local people gave great importance to irrigation as a source of employment (5.6/7) and inputs (4.5/7), although their satisfaction decreases about the current price of water for agriculture (0.02 EUR m-3). In addition, they are really worried about the overuse of fertilizers and herbicides (5.4/7) and they think about the necessity of taking measures to reduce these problems (6.1/7) as well as to reduce some management problems such as supply cuts. In the last few years, private (swimming pools) and public leisure facilities (swimming pool and spa) have been built in spite of not being considered important by local people (3.6-4.0/7). Nevertheless, about 60% of them consider these common facilities very positive in terms of employment, tourism attractions and entertainment for local people.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1311
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Volume11
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jun 2019

Fingerprint

rural areas
Spain
water use
rural area
water
Water
Swimming Pools
Swimming pools
Public Facilities
shallow soil
dams (hydrology)
Leisure Activities
supermarkets
Fertilizers
Herbicides
tourism
Mediterranean climate
Agriculture
Climate
irrigation

Keywords

  • Drinking water
  • Irrigation
  • Leisure facilities
  • Local perception

Cite this

Pulido, M., Barrena-González, J., Alfonso-Torreño, A., Robina-Ramírez, R., & Keesstra, S. (2019). The problem of water use in rural areas of Southwestern Spain: A local perspective. Water (Switzerland), 11(6), [1311]. https://doi.org/10.3390/w11061311
Pulido, Manuel ; Barrena-González, Jesús ; Alfonso-Torreño, Alberto ; Robina-Ramírez, Rafael ; Keesstra, Saskia. / The problem of water use in rural areas of Southwestern Spain: A local perspective. In: Water (Switzerland). 2019 ; Vol. 11, No. 6.
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abstract = "Water is a key strategic resource, particularly in Mediterranean climate-type areas with impermeable rocks and shallow soils like Southwestern Spain. The region of Extremadura is commonly known by its large surface occupied by big dams (30{\%} of water dammed in Spain) although this theoretical abundance of water does not hide other problems of use. In this study, we have interviewed 132 people from the municipality of Arroyo de San Serv{\'a}n in order to know what the problems related to water use are, especially those that concern local people the most. Regarding the use of water at home, 90{\%} of interviewees spend less than 60 EUR per month for water and their mean degree of satisfaction about the service is 3.7 out of 7. The reason for this low value can be the excessive content of calcium and bad taste according to 82.1{\%}. Therefore, 64.2{\%} of people do not usually drink water from the tap. Around two thirds of these local people usually buy water in the supermarket or drink filtered water. Concerning agricultural activities, local people gave great importance to irrigation as a source of employment (5.6/7) and inputs (4.5/7), although their satisfaction decreases about the current price of water for agriculture (0.02 EUR m-3). In addition, they are really worried about the overuse of fertilizers and herbicides (5.4/7) and they think about the necessity of taking measures to reduce these problems (6.1/7) as well as to reduce some management problems such as supply cuts. In the last few years, private (swimming pools) and public leisure facilities (swimming pool and spa) have been built in spite of not being considered important by local people (3.6-4.0/7). Nevertheless, about 60{\%} of them consider these common facilities very positive in terms of employment, tourism attractions and entertainment for local people.",
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Pulido, M, Barrena-González, J, Alfonso-Torreño, A, Robina-Ramírez, R & Keesstra, S 2019, 'The problem of water use in rural areas of Southwestern Spain: A local perspective', Water (Switzerland), vol. 11, no. 6, 1311. https://doi.org/10.3390/w11061311

The problem of water use in rural areas of Southwestern Spain: A local perspective. / Pulido, Manuel; Barrena-González, Jesús; Alfonso-Torreño, Alberto; Robina-Ramírez, Rafael; Keesstra, Saskia.

In: Water (Switzerland), Vol. 11, No. 6, 1311, 25.06.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - The problem of water use in rural areas of Southwestern Spain: A local perspective

AU - Pulido, Manuel

AU - Barrena-González, Jesús

AU - Alfonso-Torreño, Alberto

AU - Robina-Ramírez, Rafael

AU - Keesstra, Saskia

PY - 2019/6/25

Y1 - 2019/6/25

N2 - Water is a key strategic resource, particularly in Mediterranean climate-type areas with impermeable rocks and shallow soils like Southwestern Spain. The region of Extremadura is commonly known by its large surface occupied by big dams (30% of water dammed in Spain) although this theoretical abundance of water does not hide other problems of use. In this study, we have interviewed 132 people from the municipality of Arroyo de San Serván in order to know what the problems related to water use are, especially those that concern local people the most. Regarding the use of water at home, 90% of interviewees spend less than 60 EUR per month for water and their mean degree of satisfaction about the service is 3.7 out of 7. The reason for this low value can be the excessive content of calcium and bad taste according to 82.1%. Therefore, 64.2% of people do not usually drink water from the tap. Around two thirds of these local people usually buy water in the supermarket or drink filtered water. Concerning agricultural activities, local people gave great importance to irrigation as a source of employment (5.6/7) and inputs (4.5/7), although their satisfaction decreases about the current price of water for agriculture (0.02 EUR m-3). In addition, they are really worried about the overuse of fertilizers and herbicides (5.4/7) and they think about the necessity of taking measures to reduce these problems (6.1/7) as well as to reduce some management problems such as supply cuts. In the last few years, private (swimming pools) and public leisure facilities (swimming pool and spa) have been built in spite of not being considered important by local people (3.6-4.0/7). Nevertheless, about 60% of them consider these common facilities very positive in terms of employment, tourism attractions and entertainment for local people.

AB - Water is a key strategic resource, particularly in Mediterranean climate-type areas with impermeable rocks and shallow soils like Southwestern Spain. The region of Extremadura is commonly known by its large surface occupied by big dams (30% of water dammed in Spain) although this theoretical abundance of water does not hide other problems of use. In this study, we have interviewed 132 people from the municipality of Arroyo de San Serván in order to know what the problems related to water use are, especially those that concern local people the most. Regarding the use of water at home, 90% of interviewees spend less than 60 EUR per month for water and their mean degree of satisfaction about the service is 3.7 out of 7. The reason for this low value can be the excessive content of calcium and bad taste according to 82.1%. Therefore, 64.2% of people do not usually drink water from the tap. Around two thirds of these local people usually buy water in the supermarket or drink filtered water. Concerning agricultural activities, local people gave great importance to irrigation as a source of employment (5.6/7) and inputs (4.5/7), although their satisfaction decreases about the current price of water for agriculture (0.02 EUR m-3). In addition, they are really worried about the overuse of fertilizers and herbicides (5.4/7) and they think about the necessity of taking measures to reduce these problems (6.1/7) as well as to reduce some management problems such as supply cuts. In the last few years, private (swimming pools) and public leisure facilities (swimming pool and spa) have been built in spite of not being considered important by local people (3.6-4.0/7). Nevertheless, about 60% of them consider these common facilities very positive in terms of employment, tourism attractions and entertainment for local people.

KW - Drinking water

KW - Irrigation

KW - Leisure facilities

KW - Local perception

U2 - 10.3390/w11061311

DO - 10.3390/w11061311

M3 - Article

VL - 11

JO - Water

JF - Water

SN - 2073-4441

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ER -

Pulido M, Barrena-González J, Alfonso-Torreño A, Robina-Ramírez R, Keesstra S. The problem of water use in rural areas of Southwestern Spain: A local perspective. Water (Switzerland). 2019 Jun 25;11(6). 1311. https://doi.org/10.3390/w11061311