12 months and 27 days

Spain is experiencing a prolonged drought, as it is being called by the experts. 12 months and 27 days have passed since the last meeting on the 4th of March, 2022 of the Spanish National Drought Board, which was convened on the 19th of April of this year.

Neither the Minister for Agriculture, Luis Planas, nor the Minister for Ecological Transition, Teresa Ribera, attended this very important assembly; meanwhile, Pedro Sánchez bragged about how the matter should be turned into a “state policy.”

While writing this article, the most immediate conclusion reached is that the meeting was used to take a photograph of the current scenario. As if the situation of Spain turning into a branch of the Sahara is recent news!

Dear reader, I did not attend the aforementioned meeting, but the summarised context is as follows: 27% of Spain is on alert due to the water shortage; the losses in cereal crops, depending on the region, are estimated at between 50 and 80%; no aid compensate the farmers who have invested in seeds, fertiliser and diesel; the irrigated land needs greater water consumption and the dry land will really suffer.

And I only want to give one agonising figure: Andalusia, which estimates losses of around 3,000 million euros for the next campaign.

Urgent action has not been taken, because the situation has been on the cards for a long time. And now, with the water up to their necks (as the saying goes), they want to patch the situation up with aid or requests of increasing the flexibility of the CAP. The structural side of things continues to be ignored, possibly in the hope of seeing rain again. And then the process will start all over again. I am sure that, if it rains, (which is highly unlikely), the question will be taken off the political agenda.

And for those who use the fields as a political weapon due to its water consumption (which, incidentally, is highly efficient), I would like to tell them that the fields consume water, but the water is turned into food.

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