A report from the European Environment Agency points to water use in southern Europe, specifically the unsustainable building of more golf courses and swimming pools in the south of the Iberian Penninsula. While on the European Union level much attention is given to finding new sources of water and increasing access, the report points out the little is done to address water use through conservation.
The EEA points to one regional example:
Taking Spain’s Júcar River Basin as an example, it points out that 55 new golf courses are planned there in addition to the existing 19. Each golf course typically uses 500,000 m3 of water. On top of this, huge amounts of water are needed to fill up swimming pools for tourists.
Anyone who’s made their way around the South of Portugal and Spain has seen the rabid growth of golf courses and elaborate swimming pools. The neverending push for more tourism and more luxurious water consuming activities has rarely taken stock of the way the region would be effected by the increase in use.
The report doesn’t only look at recreation, agriculture is also brought into question in terms of water use and efficiency. To learn more, read the study.