Home » Colombian capital to ration water as reservoir levels fall
Colombia Featured Global News News South America Weather

Colombian capital to ration water as reservoir levels fall

BOGOTA, COLOMBIA — Colombia’s capital will start rationing water this week to alleviate droughts wrought by the El Nino weather pattern, which has exacerbated the Andean country’s dry season and caused reservoir levels to fall, Bogota Mayor Carlos Galan said Monday.

The restrictions will also apply to 11 municipalities close to the capital, affecting at least 9 million people.

The El Nino phenomenon arrived in Colombia at the end of 2023, causing high temperatures and droughts that led to forest fires throughout the Andean country and pushed reservoirs to their lowest levels in decades.

The three reservoirs that make up the Chingaza water system, which supplies Bogota with 70% of its water needs, are at just 16.9% capacity, Galan said, their lowest level in 40 years.

“Let’s not waste a drop of water in Bogota at this time,” Galan said in a news conference, adding, “That will help us so that these restrictions can be lifted more quickly or reduced.”

Bogota joins Mexico’s capital, Mexico City, and its surrounding areas — home to 21 million — which has faced water shortages for years because of low rainfall that has been attributed to climate change, as well as a growing population and antiquated infrastructure.

Under the rationing plan, Bogota will be divided into zones where cuts to water services will last 24 hours in nine areas throughout the city, Galan said, adding the first suspensions will begin Thursday.

The rationing plan — shared by the nine regions in Bogota — will restart every 10 days and authorities will reevaluate the measure every two weeks, Galan added.

Source: VOA