ON the advice of the regional Environment ministry yesterday, the Balearic government has approved emergency measures to be taken in the torrents (water courses) at Arta, Pollensa and Capdepera.
Regional government spokesman, Joan Flaquer, said that the purpose of the programme is to make good the damage caused by the rains which fell at the beginning of the month, and by so doing, to avoid water bursting the banks of the torrents.
Flaquer explained that heavy rainfall had reduced the water-holding capacity of the torrents due to loose material being swept down the channels and blocking their path.
Damage had been sustained both on the beds of the water courses as well as on their borders.
The government acknowledged, said Flaquer, that the situation warranted urgent action, so that water could flow freely and safely on the next occasion of heavy rainfall.
IBAEN, the Balearic Institute for Water and Energy, immediately responsible for the upkeep and safety of the torrents, is to manage the repair and upgrading work using a budget of 990'000 euros.
Meanwhile the underground rivers (aquifers) of Majorca, a major supply of household water, are running at 50 per cent of their capacity following only 17 per cent during the drought years of 2000 and 2001.