Rosselló and Rodriguez met council representatives.

The Balearic minister of the environment, Margalida Rosselló, said yesterday that there is no need to build a desalination plant on the former site of a GESA power station in the port of Alcudia. The central ministry of the environment, lead by former Balearic leader Jaume Matas, wanted to build the plant to provide water for the whole of the north of the island. Rossello claimed that thanks to the construction of the Integrated Water System, the desalination plant in the port of Alcudia would not be needed, as the one in the bay of Palma could be used. She added that new investments such as those planned for the port of Alcudia will be unnecessary if water can be carried to the north of the island from the desalination plant in Palma via the new integrated system. The central ministry plans call for an investment of 24 million pesetas and will not be completed until the end of 2004, by which time they will be able to produce 14'000 cubic metres of water a day, with the possibility of this figure being increased by 7'000 cubic metres. Yesterday Rosselló held talks with representatives of the town councils in the north which will be affected by the integrated system. She said that work would start at the end of this year and be ready before next summer. She was accompanied by Antonio Rodriguez, the director general of water resources, who said that plans for the integrated system would be ready within a month with a budget of 12 million euros and the possibility of European funding. He said it would guarantee supplies and ensure a more efficient use of available water. The integrated system will link the desalination plant in Palma with Alcudia and Pollensa, passing through Muro, Sa Pobla and Campanet. It will integrate surface water such as fountains and underground water tables such as those of S'Estremera, Llubi and Crestaix. Rosselló claimed that from an environmental point of view it leads to a more efficient use of renewable resources such as aquifers and fountains and makes better use of the water from existing desalination plants.


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