While the Balearic Environment Minister, Margalida Rossello, hit back at claims by the director of the Palma city council water board EMAYA, Maria Crespo, that “we will have no water this summer,” the Balearic met. office said yesterday that this winter has been the driest and warmest for the past 50 years. Rossello again accused Crespo of being alarmist and called for “ a bit of seriousness” about the situation and for those concerned to start taking responsibility for solving the problem. The Environmental Mixed Commission and the councils of Palma and Calvia are apparently confident that they can meet demand in the bay of Palma, where last summer, daily demand was the highest in the Balearics. But as the politicians get swamped in another heated debate over how to avoid a water crisis this summer, as winter drew to a close on Tuesday, the met office in Palma reported that this winter's rainfall has been unusually low. For example, since January 1, only 38 litres of rain fell per square metre, at Palma airport the figure is as low as 26 litres per square metre. According to the meteorological office, this winter's rainfall is down by 54 per cent in comparison to previous years.

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