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11.16.2009

Befesa awarded the contract to modernise the Guadalhorce irrigation channels in Málaga (Spain)

Madrid, 16 November 2009. Empresa de Gestión Medioambiental, S.A. (Egmasa), the public company of the regional government of Andalusia, has awarded Befesa the project to enclose the irrigation channels of the Guadalhorce Valley and to improve their capacity, in a contract worth more than €8.0 million.

The objectives of the awarded project are to modernise the irrigation channels and to protect Málaga's water supply, since the channels also carry water for the city. The irrigation area of the Guadalhorce Valley comprises 9,700 hectares and has 20,000 irrigation users. It has two channels that run along either side of the river, connected to a series of irrigation ditches of various types and sections, with a total length of 179 kilometres.

The awarded actions focus on the main channel and the irrigation ditches of Los Llanos and Molino Alcuña. The channel begins at the La Encantada weir and carries the water to the Atabal drinking water plant over a distance of 40 kilometres. The project involves covering the open air sections of the channel. This will help to partly prevent the risk of accidents and toxic spills, which could affect the more than 550,000 inhabitants of the city of Málaga. It will also protect the channel from the effects of sunlight, helping to prevent algae growth and the resulting reduction in capacity.

The works also include the substitution of the irrigation ditches of Los Llanos, Molino Alcuña-Ribera and Barullo with new enclosed pipes. These actions will reduce water consumption by preventing losses due to the poor condition of the system.

Javier Molina, Chairman of Befesa, said, "Thanks to these works, Befesa is helping to guarantee the availability, quality and the efficient use of these water resources, while at the same time offering sustainable solutions for the integral water cycle".

Befesa, the environmental services subsidiary of Abengoa, focuses on providing environmental services to industry and the construction of environmental infrastructures. It is a public listed company with a market capitalisation in excess of €325 million (close 2008). (www.befesa.com).