Water consumption from the Tramuntana reservoirs was last year the highest since 2010. Figures from the Emaya municipal services agency in Palma show that the reservoirs supplied 28% of water needs in 2018.
Between 2010 and 2018, the principal source of supply was from wells. On average, these supplied 53% of the city's water, whereas the reservoirs supplied 22%. Other sources were natural springs and desalination plants - just five per cent of needs were covered by desalination.
The use of reservoir water fluctuates year by year. In 2016, for instance, it was only seven per cent. The reason was drought. Water that had to be bought in, i.e. desalinated supply, shot up to 30%, while the wells supplied slightly more than the average - 57%.
Last year, desalination plants provided only 1.5% of supply, while the natural springs gave 25.7%. Heavy rainfall last year filled the reservoirs and kept topping them up. There was therefore little need to buy in desalinated supply.
The availability of reservoir water is constantly subject to the weather. Although there was heavy rain last week, the second half of winter was very dry. Reservoir capacity is now down to 58.5%. If the trend continues into April and May, there will come a point when Emaya decides to buy in desalinated water.