Angat Dam to hit lowest level if current conditions continue

MANILA The Angat Dam is seen to hit its lowest level in history if current conditions continue, a Manila Water official said on Tuesday.

Donna Perez, head of Manila Water's Used Water Operations and Performance Planning department, said as of 3 p.m. Tuesday, Angat Dam's water level is at 158.6 meters, below the 160-meter critical level which is slightly higher than 157.54 meters, the lowest recorded in the dam since 2010, and may continue to dip due to climate woes and high output demand.

Previously, we're implementing from eight to 12 hours, now we're implementing 12 to 17 hours of water interruption, Perez said in an interview with the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

On Saturday, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) reduced the water allocation for Manila Water to 36 cubic meters per second, a total of about 300 million liters per day, further reducing the water distributor's capacity to satisfy the demand of its 6.8 million customers.

To address the shortage of water in the Angat and La Mesa watersheds, Perez said cloud-seeding operations have been ongoing in the two areas since April of this year, with so far 49 successful sorties out of the 53 operations.

Cloud seeding operations is not really a guaranteed solution but we implement it in such a way, banking on the chance that the seedable clouds are within the Angat and La Mesa watershed, she said.

Citing forecast from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), Manila Water technical spokesperson Kri Guevarra said rains are expected in July, but it may take three more months before water level at Angat Dam returns to normal.

We are appealing to our customers for their understanding while we are in this situation right now. We have a very limited supply that we are trying our best to equitably distribute to everyone, Guevarra said.

Manila Water also urged its customers to participate in efforts to reduce water consumption in the household level.

For the laundry, we could recycle water used to rinse washed clothes into washing our cars and cleaning our backyard or flushing our toilets, Guevarra said.

The Angat Reservoir and Dam are located in San Lorenzo, Norzagaray, Bulacan and supply roughly 96 percent of Metro Manila's water requirement.

Manila Water Company, Inc. provides water and used water services to 6.8 million people in the East Zone of Metro Manila and Rizal Province, consisting of 23 cities and municipalities. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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