Water interruptions needed to prevent the 2020 crisis

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Longer water service interruptions in more areas may be required in the coming months to avoid a dry season water shortage in 2020 that could be worse than the one faced in Metro Manila and nearby areas earlier this year.

The government regulators said that even heavy rains would not be enough to raise the water level of the Angat Dam from the current 185 meters to the target water level of 212 meters.

Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System Manager Emmanuel Salamat said there was no water crisis, but said there was a need to stop one.

Salamat said MWSS was speeding up the building of the Kaliwa Dam in Quezon Province. The dam is projected to provide 600 million liters of water per day to Manila Metro when completed in 2023.

Nevertheless, the building of the Kaliwa Dam was opposed by the indigenous community in Quezon as it would have a negative impact on the environment and their homes.

The militant group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) blasted concessionaires for their supposed lack of action on water shortages.

Concessionaire Manila Water has already opened its Cardona Water Treatment Plant, which could supply 100 million liters per day.

In addition, deep wells have been used to provide up to 45 million liters of water per day.

In the meantime, Maynilad Water Services Inc. has stated that they have expanded the capacity of their water treatment facilities originating from Laguna Lake, which provides 50 million liters per day.

All water concessionaires made daily rotational water interruptions beginning on Thursday, October 24, due to the scarce rains that affected the Angat Dam.

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