Memorias de investigación
Book chapters:
The Guadiana Basin

Research Areas
  • Agriculture

The Guadiana is a transboundary basin whose water resources are shared by Spain and Portugal. The river rises in the Spanish province of Cuenca and flows 778km first in a westerly direction, then south into the Gulf of Cadiz near the Portuguese port of Vila Real de Santo António (Figure 6.1). It drains an area of 66,800km2 of which 11,580km2 (17 per cent) lies in Portugal. Within NeWater, work has concentrated on the Spanish side of the basin, although not exclusively. Most of the research has focused in the Upper Guadiana Basin (UGB), above the El Vicario reservoir, that provides an example of conflict caused by the over-exploitation of water resources in a semi-arid region. Since the 1970s uncontrolled abstraction of groundwater to provide water for crop irrigation has lowered the water table in places by up to 50m, causing the main river channels to run dry and wetlands to become desiccated. The Tablas de Daimiel National Park, an internationally renowned wetland, is perhaps the most high profile victim of the desiccation process. The abstraction has also supported a booming agricultural economy with all the associated social benefits. The result has been conflict between farmers, local government, regulators and conservationists that legal action, subsidies and engineering solutions have to this date, failed to combat.
Book Edition
Book Publishing
Earthscan London
Book title
The Adaptive Water Resource Management Handbook
From page
To page

Research Group, Departaments and Institutes related
  • Creador: Grupo de Investigación: Economía Agraria y Gestión de los Recursos Naturales
  • Centro o Instituto I+D+i: Centro de Estudios e Investigación para la Gestión de Riesgos Agrarios Medioambientales (CEIGRAM)