Drought hits Catania, but water bills anger citrus farmers.

Hundreds of agricultural entrepreneurs in the Plain of Catania and the Igp Sicilian red orange consortium, in the last week have received payment notices for thousands of euros from the Revenue Agency, due, according to the collection agency, from farmers to Sicilian reclamation consortia for “land improvement, operation and maintenance of irrigation works for the year 2023”. This is stated by the president of the consortium, Gerardo Diana.

“It seems like a bad joke – he says – but it is the truth. We are the only European region marked by a red dot for drought. The President of the Sicilian Region has decided to declare a state of natural calamity due to ‘severe drought’ and we come from a year of absolute water shortage, during which we have had to face enormous difficulties. In the current season, many of us have had to face extraordinary expenses to ensure the necessary water for citrus groves and the production of red oranges. And now, instead of aid, we receive blows,” says the president.

“The members of the Consortium I preside over are in turmoil and demand immediate clarification on this mockery. We cannot pay these exorbitant bills to the reclamation consortia. Together with professional organizations, we demand a meeting with the President of the Region Renato Schifani, with the regional Agriculture councilor and with the heads of the reclamation consortia to find a solution to these absurd taxes that could definitively sink a sector that, only regarding the Sicilian Igp Red Orange Consortium, employs thousands of workers and has a turnover of 40 million euros.”

C’è siccità, ma arrivano le cartelle esattoriali per l’acqua: sale l’ira dei produttori agrumicoli della Piana di Catania

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