How to Close the Gap of Desalinated Seawater for Agricultural Irrigation? Confronting Attitudes between Managers and Farmers in Alicante and Murcia (Spain)

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Title: How to Close the Gap of Desalinated Seawater for Agricultural Irrigation? Confronting Attitudes between Managers and Farmers in Alicante and Murcia (Spain)
Authors: Ricart Casadevall, Sandra | Villar Navascués, Rubén Alejandro | Gil-Guirado, Salvador | Rico, Antonio | Arahuetes Hidalgo, Ana
Research Group/s: Agua y Territorio | Clima y Ordenación del Territorio
Center, Department or Service: Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Análisis Geográfico Regional y Geografía Física | Universidad de Alicante. Instituto Interuniversitario de Geografía
Keywords: Desalinated seawater | Irrigation communities | Desalination plant | Water-energy cost | Perception | Alicante | Murcia | Spain
Knowledge Area: Análisis Geográfico Regional
Issue Date: 15-Apr-2020
Publisher: MDPI
Citation: Ricart S, Villar-Navascués R, Gil-Guirado S, Rico-Amorós AM, Arahuetes A. How to Close the Gap of Desalinated Seawater for Agricultural Irrigation? Confronting Attitudes between Managers and Farmers in Alicante and Murcia (Spain). Water. 2020; 12(4):1132. doi:10.3390/w12041132
Abstract: Although desalination water cost and quality standards have been widely studied, less attention has been paid to understanding how desalination plant managers and irrigation communities interact to address water scarcity. This paper aims to approach these questions from experience in Alicante and Murcia (Spain). Two specific questionnaires have been applied to (1) three desalination plants managed by the Spanish public company ACUAMED, and (2) 11 irrigation communities who use desalinated seawater. Discursive analysis has been applied in order to deepen understanding on the driving factors, benefits, and barriers of desalination use and management. Results highlighted how (1) irrigation communities consider desalination as a complementary water source to be combined with conventional water resources, (2) both ACUAMED and irrigation communities highlighted two main advantages of desalination: the security/guarantee of supply and water quality parameters, and (3) managers and irrigators disagree on the desalination model of seawater provision and management, since irrigators consider that the Central Union of the Tajo-Segura transfer irrigators (SCRATS) should have a leading role. In addition, the main driving factors and barriers useful for policy makers when closing the gap of desalination have been identified: water price and energy consumption; lack of water storage capacity and regulation; environmental impacts.
Sponsor: This research was funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (PLUVIRESMED research project, reference CSO2015-65182-C2-2P); by the Spanish Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities (Juan de la Cierva-Incorporación postdoctoral grant to S.G., reference IJCI-2016-29016) and by the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport (predoctoral fellowship to R.V., reference FPU15/01144).
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10045/105829
ISSN: 2073-4441
DOI: 10.3390/w12041132
Language: eng
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Rights: © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Peer Review: si
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.3390/w12041132
Appears in Collections:INV - CyOT - Artículos de Revistas
INV - Agua y Territorio - Artículos de Revistas

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