By Peter McLaren-Kennedy • 25 June 2022 • 23:04
Marina Alta’s water vulnerable to contamination by nitrates
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A list issued by the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development, Climate Emergency and Ecological Transition on June 24, shows that 15 out of the 33 municipalities in the region are at risk. The latest two, Calpe and Teulada.
Although occurring naturally in soil, volumes are small. Nitrates used in farming however are significantly higher and can leach into the soil poisoning the water where concentrations exist.
According to Tapsafe: “Nitrates are a necessary nutrient for plants growth, high concentration of nitrates in drinking water may cause several health problems in humans such as respiratory and reproductive diseases, kidney, spleen, and thyroid in children and adults. It is particularly harmful to infants.”
The first sign of nitrate poisoning is blue skin, at which medical help should be sought urgently.
The Generalitat Valenciana is aware of the issue and is constantly monitoring levels to ensure they do not pose a danger to residents. Treatment plants are able to remove the nitrates using a variety of processes, which can be further removed at home through distillation,
With the incorporation of Calpe and Teulada, the 15 municipalities threatened with contamination of their groundwater by nitrates are: Dénia, Pego, El Verger, Beniarbeig, Benidoleig, Benimeli, Ondara, Orba, Pedreguer, Els Poblets, El Ràfol d’Almúnia, Sagra, Sanet i Negrals, Tormos and Xàbia,
Water authorities will be aware that Marina Alta’s water is vulnerable to contamination by nitrates and will be taking measures to ensure levels do not reach dangerous points. Many believe however that more needs to be done to reduce the use of nitrates in farming.
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Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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