Ecologists in Action has been able to verify the transformation to irrigation, illegally, of different plots located in the municipality of Pliego, where it has been broken and new irrigation systems have been created in various places, such as Manzanete, Lomas de Perucho, Cabezo el Quintín , House of Congoja, Cocón de Ramírez, Corral del Herrador and La Hoya Perlas.
In these places, apricot, peach, almond and olive tree crops have been irrigated.
These transformed plots involve the creation of at least 60 hectares of irrigation with water from the Irrigation Community of Pliego, irregularly, in addition to having installed infrastructure for irrigation, such as caves, pipes and drip irrigation.
This creation of new irrigation contravenes current regulations, such as the Hydrological Plan for the Demarcation of Insurance, which does not allow the creation of new irrigation.
These new transformations to irrigation show the lack of government in Pliego in the use of water and in the transformation of land uses, and constitute an example of the situation of misgovernment in terms of water and changes in land use that affect, in to a greater or lesser extent, to the whole of the Region of Murcia and the Segura basin.
It should be remembered that these transformations to irrigation, in addition to being illegal, aggravate the situation of scarcity of water resources that exists in the basin and in particular directly affect the pre-existing legal irrigation in Pliego, by assuming the appropriation of water resources and assigned to other users, so there is obvious damage to pre-existing rights.
In addition, the irrigated transformation of rainfed areas leads to significant environmental impacts, since traditional drylands contribute to the maintenance of biodiversity, especially of steppe species and habitats, contribute to the connectivity of the territory and maintain the landscape value of the same.
Therefore, Ecologists in Action requires the application of legality, and the imposition of exemplary sanctions to the offenders responsible for the creation of these new irrigation perimeters in Pliego, with the obligation to restore the land to its previous condition, as and as required by current legislation.
Source: Ecologistas en Acción