Fri, Mar 20, 2015 - Page 1 News List

Government to step up water rationing

GOING DRY:Water will be supplied to New Taipei City’s Linkou, Banciao and Sinjhuang districts and to Taoyuan on only five days a week, affecting 1.01 million households

By Lauly Li  /  Staff reporter

Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Yang Wei-fu, left, yesterday prepares to announce a government decision to implement phase-three water rationing on April 1 at a press conference at the Ministry of Economic Affairs in Taipei.

Photo: CNA

The government is to implement phase-three water rationing in New Taipei City’s Linkou (林口), Banciao (板橋) and Sinjhuang (新莊) districts, and in Taoyuan on April 1 amid declining water levels at the Shihmen Reservoir (石門水庫) in Taoyuan, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday.

“This is a necessary decision in a bid to extend the length of the water supply from the Shihmen Reservoir,” Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Yang Wei-fu (楊偉甫) told a press conference after a water supply meeting.

Water is to be supplied to the areas only five days per week on a rotation basis, affecting more than 1.01 million households and industrial users, Yang said.

“If the situation deteriorates, we might further increase the number of days that the water supply is suspended, such as supplying water for four days and then suspending the supply for two days,” he said. “The worst-case scenario would be to supply water only for a certain number of hours per day, but we are doing everything we can to prevent that from happening.”

Yang said it was agreed to reduce the supply of water to industrial users from the Shihmen Reservoir and the Yungshan (永和山水庫) Reservoir in Miaoli County.

“The 7.5 percent decrease in the daily water supply to industrial users will be increased to 10 percent, beginning on Monday next week,” Yang said.

The meeting also agreed to increase the daily reduction in supply to other industrial users to 7.5 percent from 5 percent, he said.

The Industrial Development Bureau is to report on the potential impact of phase-three water rationing on local industries by the end of next month, Yang said.

Yang said the government wants to encourage households to use water-saving tools to conserve water, including water-saving faucets.

The government plans to discount the bills of individual households if they save more than 30 percent of their water usage compared with last year, Yang said, adding that details of the plan are to be announced by the end of next month.

The government is considering implementing nighttime water rationing during the low-water season between November and March on a regular basis, he said.

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