Reservoirs remain thirsty despite rain

The China Post staff

Ten cities and townships in Taipei County continue the suspension of water supply for one and a half days beginning this morning as the rains yesterday did not made significant contributions to replenishing water at two major water reservoirs in northern Taiwan. As forecast by the Central Weather Bureau (CWB), rain fell in the northern, northeastern, and central parts of the island today. Many districts in southern Taiwan were also graced with showers for the second day in a row. Although officials in Chiayi said not much water ended up in water reservoirs in the county, water dams in Tainan County reported influx of over 10 million metric tons of water in the past two days. A technical team of the Water Conservancy Bureau performed cloud seeding operations three times starting at 2:00 a.m. yesterday, but the rainfall was gauged at less than 29mm by 6:00 p.m. at the water-gathering areas of Feitsui Reservoir, the major water source for Taipei City and some neighboring townships in Taipei County. The water level at the reservoir fell even further to 122.18 meters at 6:00 p.m. yesterday compared with 122.64 meters Thursday, getting closer to the “dead water level” of 101 meters. Officials administering the dam said a portion of the rain falling yesterday simply evaporated in hot temperature caused by the drought while some was sucked up by the parched land. Please see RAIN on page

The volume of water that finally trickled into the reservoir was rather limited. Officials worried that the “dead water level” will be reached by the end of June. They expressed hope that there can be continuous rains falling in the catchment area of the reservoir in coming days so that the water level at the dam can increase. Rainfall at Shihmen Dam area in Taoyuan stood at a disappointing 32mm, although it was the biggest rainfall for any single day during the month of May.

Rotational water rationing remains in place in Taipei City. Abiding by instructions from the Drought Disaster Relief Center of the central government, the suspension of water supply for one and a half days over the weekend in Taipei County continues today.

The affected areas include four cities of Panchiao, Tuchen, Hsingchuang, and Shulin plus several townships of Sanshia, Yingko, Linkou, Taishan, Luchou, Pali, and Wuku in Taipei County. Certain districts in the cities of Chungho, Sanchung, and Shihchih are also affected. The so-called third-phase water-saving measure has been in force since May 19. Taipei County Government officials urged residents with problems concerning water supply to contact the Taipei Water Department at 8733-5678, the Taiwan Provincial Water Co. at 0800-000-876, or the Bureau of Economic Development of the county government at 2968-6067.