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Madalena ,  July 10, 2019

Regional Government invests 522 thousand Euros in reinforcement of water supply to agriculture on Pico Island, says João Ponte

The Regional Secretary for Agriculture and Forestry stated that the investment of 522 thousand Euros made by the Regional Government in the works of Cabeço Pequeno water abstraction borehole and its connection to the existing network on Pico Island falls within the regional strategy to reinforce water supply to agriculture.
"This investment is at the service of the agricultural sector and will boost its development so that it can be better prepared to face the challenges we still have to overcome," said João Ponte.
The government official spoke Tuesday, the second day of the Government's visit to Pico, at the opening of the works of that water abstraction borehole that were carried out by IROA - Regional Institute of Agrarian Planning. It will benefit 110 farms in an area of 1,100 hectares.
For João Ponte, the challenges on Pico Island are even greater due to the terrain conditions, the quality of the soil and the difficulty in accessing water. Nonetheless, the performance of farmers, the support to the producers' organisations, the investments and the public policies pursued by the Regional Government have managed to overcome the challenges in favour of the development of Pico and the Region.
The Regional Secretary emphasised that the Government's satisfaction with this opening also lies in the fact that the work represents an improvement in farmers' working conditions, the efficiency of farms and the increased competitiveness of the sector. Moreover, it represents an improvement of farmers' income and the preparation of the sector for the future, ensuring its sustainability.
In terms of reinforcing water supply on Pico Island, João Ponte recalled that the construction works of Paul artificial pond were opened in January and two reservoirs will be built in Prainha. There are also plans for the reinforcement of water supply in Chã Verde and Cabecinhas, starting from Lagoa do Capitão lake.
João Ponte also pointed out that a number of studies are being conducted on several islands, especially on Pico Island, in order to identify alternative sources of water supply. This will help the Government to define a series of investments in the next legislative term to ensure the supply of water to farms.
"It is also important to highlight the effort undertaken by farmers in this area. Under the current Community Support Framework, almost seven dozen projects have been approved, which corresponds to an investment of more than two million Euros in the reinforcement of water storage capacity in farms. This is fundamental to water saving and the good management of resources, but also to reduction of costs incurred by farms," stated the government official.
Regarding the good implementation of Community funds, which is fundamental for improving the efficiency of farms, the Secretary noted that 120 modernisation projects and 32 first installation projects were approved under PRORURAL+, representing investments of 9.1 million Euros and 1.5 million Euros, respectively. These indicators show the confidence of the sector.
According to João Ponte, 40 million Euros have been invested in the water supply by IROA over the last 15 years. These investments have leveraged the development of the agricultural sector, giving confidence to various agents and boosting private investment.
In the municipality of Madalena, the water is supplied to the population and agriculture by pumped underground water, whose boreholes were already overexploited. Hence, the works now opened will promote a considerable improvement in water quality and prevent the overuse of existing boreholes.


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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