Taichung to set plans for possible water rationing this week

Taipei-The central Taiwan city of Taichung, among those hardest hit by an ongoing drought, will begin to finalize plans for possible water rationing this week, Taichung City Mayor Lu Shiow-yen (???) said recently.

There will be numerous approaches on the table after discussions with the Water Resources Agency (WRA), including reducing water supplies to five days a week on a rotational basis, Lu said last week.

Lu said the city government is preparing for the worst but hoping for the best under the current “orange” warning, just one level below the most serious “red” alert.

Based on the WRA’s four-color water shortage warning system, an orange alert covers preliminary water rationing steps that limit total water consumption and reduce the supply of water.

A red alert triggers a second phase of water rationing, during which water is only made available to certain areas at certain times.

Taichung has currently cut the supply of water by 5-20 percent for industrial users and by 20 percent for non-industrial users who consume more than 1,000 cubic meters per month.

The supply of water to non-essential water users, such as to facilities with swimming pools, car wash operators, and spas, has also been cut by 20 percent.

In response to speculation that other areas under the orange alert, such as Miaoli County, will follow suit, the WRA said such practices are normal when water supplies are tight.

Members of the public should not panic, the WRA said, adding that its goal is to keep both industrial and household water supplies stable to at least the end of May, with “another month of flexibility.”

According to the WRA, the water reserves at four of the six reservoirs in central Taiwan are at lower than 15 percent of their respective capacities.

The biggest one, Techi Reservoir, was down to only 8.43 percent of its capacity as of Sunday night.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel