President Armengol told parliament yesterday that there is "a problem" with spills of wastewater but that her government has been working on this since it took office. Armengol was referring in particular to the spills at Palma beaches that have occurred regularly over the past month because of the frequent downpours of rain. She stressed that the Emaya municipal services agency in Palma is to invest 30 million euros in addressing the problem.
For the first time since 2009, Armengol observed, 30 million euros from the water tax is to be spent and will solve 70% of the issues which have arisen in Palma this summer.
The president was responding to the leader of El Pi, Jaume Font, a former Balearic environment minister. He refused to accept that the problem with faecal water spills was an historical one. Twelve years ago, he noted, the Balearics were in the vanguard when it came to treatment facilities (Font was minister with the Partido Popular from 2003 to 2007). He called for there to be a plan for water sanitation and to ensure that this plan is "visible".
Armengol insisted that the figures for spending are available but recognised that much still needed to be done. This was because for four years (when the PP were in office between 2011 and 2015), there was no investment.
The president concluded that an "apocalyptic tone" was contrary to reality. Palma has a problem, and the town hall manages the treatment plants. But the government agency Abaqua manages 80 of the total of 96 plants and has experienced only two cases of spills.