Strategic projects PEMB

Hydraulic barrier against saltwater encroachment to preserve the Llobregat aquifer

  • Environmental protection and sustainable urban systems
  • 2007
  • 2008
  • 2009
  • 2010
  • 2011
  • Developing
  • Operating
  • Stand-by

One of the main uses for water generated at the Prat de Llobregat plant is the formation of a hydraulic barrier against saltwater encroachment to preserve the Llobregat aquifer. The design discharge for this is some 15.000 m3/day, divided into two phases: the first of 5,000 m3/day and the second for the remainder of the discharge.

Project Leader

Martín Gullón Santos, Director of Water Cycle Services and Environmental Management of the Barcelona Metropolitan Area.

The regeneration plant treatments used to form the barrier against saltwater encroachment are those of coagulation and flocculation, decantation, filtration, disinfection process, ultra-filtration and reverse osmosis.

The results of the first stage were satisfactory and there was success in reducing the aquifer’s salinity. The first results of the second phase have also been very good and in line with the existing forecasts.

This action together with others such as the recharging of the aquifer and the exhaustive control of extracts will make the aquifer a strategic resource in the AMB’s water policy.


Design discharge: 15,000 m3/day (5,000 m3/day in the first stage)

Total investment: € 14 M (€ 7.5 M in the second phase, of which works were started in 2008 and the first tests done in 2009)

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