Hérault Valley: clear improvement on the water front… urbanization remains under pressure for certain municipalities

Hérault Valley: clear improvement on the water front… urbanization remains under pressure for certain municipalities
Hérault Valley: clear improvement on the water front… urbanization remains under pressure for certain municipalities

Spring precipitation relieves water resources. For seven municipalities in the Valley, urban development is however limited by the capacity for access to water. Solutions are coming…

The gradual lifting of restrictions bears witness to this: after a particularly rainy spring, the hydrological situation is relaxing in the Heart of Hérault. And that’s so much the better. The springs are springing up again, the alluvial water table of the Hérault is doing well and in the karst, for example, “the Combes Salinière drilling went up 14 meters”, measures Olivier Servel. A president of the Water Board who warns all the same. Because in the face of the improvement which suggests a calm summer on the resource front, it is nevertheless prudent, and responsible, to keep the culture and practice intact, “eco-friendly gestures.”

Prepare for the future

Above all, for the Valley Water Authority it is a question of continuing to prepare for the future in a territory which will not escape a clear climatic trend towards warming and aridification and therefore, to increased pressure on the water resources. So to compensate for these developments in a territory which is, at the same time, subject to tremendous demographic pressure, prospecting and securing networks are more crucial than ever.

In the valley elsewhere, work in Laumède, in the commune of Pouget, is progressing well and suggests, by 2026-2027, a lasting interconnection between Le Pouget, Popian, Saint-Bauzille, Pouzols. Currently “the (own) resources of these municipalities have been well recharged* (Le Pradel for Saint-Bauzille and Popian) and the Pouzols water table). We are in the process of connecting Pouzols with the Pouget, definitively (end of work this summer). If necessary, Pouzols will be secure. » The same for Saint-Bauzille urgently connected to a temporary network during the 2023 harvest.
Tensions on water… pressure on town planning
Ultimately, these four municipalities will be connected and secured in the Puits de Laumède sector. “We have done additional drilling, on a catchment field, which will be able to release more water. In the more or less distant future (2026-2027), we will be able to supply these four municipalities from this site “. While waiting for this deadline, intercommunal solidarity, of good quality, on the current resource leads to constraints on these same villages. Because by 2026-2027, in the event of tension on water, “if everyone draws on the same resource, in need of peak in these four municipalities, we will not pass on the Laumède Well. We still think we will be able to articulate all of this, but we will have to go through eco-friendly gestures…” The question therefore arises of the urbanization of these villages, “we have to be consistent. What we do elsewhere in Montarnaud, Argelliers and Saint-Paul-et-Valmalle*, it is logical to do here. When I am asked about a planning permit or a building permit build, I am obliged, as someone responsible for water, to say that resources are not unlimited.” Ultimately, the mayors have control over the permits, but the Water Authority does not give a green hand to the urbanization of the sector. And by 2027, the capacity of the Laumède draining field should make it possible to ease some of the pressure… on town planning.

For the sector of Argelliers, Montarnaud, Saint-Paul-et-Valmalle, supplied by Pic-Saint-Loup, the future complementary resource of Redonnel should bring fresh air to town planning. And prospecting in the Boissière sector seems promising and could provide a new, castic solution on this side of the territory.
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