The Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries, Water, and Rural Development, Carmen Crespo, met with Noam Weisbrod, director and researcher of the Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, thus fulfilling the commitment made by the Andalusian Government at COP 27 held in Egypt. President Juanma Moreno announced that the Andalusian autonomous community would strengthen ties with Israel to work continuously in the water field.
The institutes that Weisbrod runs form a network of scientific centers created by Israel in the 1970s to recover the Negev desert for agriculture. Their performance over the years has made the country a world reference in the field.
“Andalusia and Israel have great similarities in the field of water, as rainfall in both territories is scarce and we must take advantage of every drop of water for crops,” Carmen Crespo stated. “Israel's agricultural model is an example to follow to achieve maximum efficiency in the use of water and, in this way, promote the generation of wealth and employment,” she added.
The head of Agriculture has committed to "share experiences of both territories that contribute to improve water security, curb desertification, and preserve the fertility of agricultural soils to continue cultivating the fields of Almeria and thus contribute to the necessary food sovereignty of Spain and Europe." Not surprisingly, both Andalusia and Israel share some techniques and can complement each other with different ones and even advance in the development of new techniques or systems through the application of the R+D+i that is currently being carried out in agriculture in both territories.
Among other specific issues, Carmen Crespo spoke about the reuse of water resources. “It's an important commitment of the current Andalusian Government and a point in common with Israel, which makes used of 60% of its wastewater.” In this regard, the Minister recalled that the Junta is working to add 120 hm³ of regenerated water to the Andalusian irrigators to "advance in the implementation of a water model that is not limited to traditional sources, but that takes advantage of all the sources that we have at our disposal: each area's surface waters, transfers, desalinated, and regenerated water."