The decade-long improvement project of Taoyuan’s Shihmen Reservoir (石門水庫) is slated for completion in November and its Jhongjhuang (中庄) backup tank is expected to supply an additional 800,000 tonnes of water per day, Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Yang Wei-fu (楊偉甫) said yesterday.
A facility vital to northern Taiwan, Shihmen Reservoir supplies water to about 2.79 million users in Taoyuan, and New Taipei City’s Banciao (板橋) and Sindian (新店) districts, Yang said.
However, one-third of the 53-year-old reservoir’s capacity is blocked by sediment as a result of silting, leaving a volume of about 200 million cubic meters, he said.
Photo: copy by Lee Jung-ping, Taipei Times
In 2006, the government initiated an upgrade, which will be concluded when the Jhongjhuang tank’s construction finishes by November, Yang said.
Built on a disused stretch of the Dahan River (大漢溪), which passes through the two municipalities, the Jhongjhuang tank in Taoyuan’s Dasi District (大溪) will serve as a backup for the main reservoir, especially when the reservoir has to sluice mud in the wake of typhoons and heavy rainfall.
The ministry’s Water Resources Agency conducted a trial run of the tank from May 10 to June 18 and confirmed that it can store up to 5.05 million tonnes of water and supply 800,000 tonnes of water per day, the ministry said.
Functioning like a smaller reservoir, the tank can assure stable water supply to users in northern Taoyuan and New Taipei City’s Banciao and Sindian districts for a week in case the reservoir’s Yuanshan Weir (鳶山堰) needs to discharge sediments, it said.
The agency also built a barrage across the tank that is operated through hydraulic pressure and can do so without electricity, which makes it more flexible in silt sluicing and reduces the effect on water supply.
According to the ministry, this is the nation’s first mobile barrage across a river and the largest in Southeast Asia.
Shihmen Reservoir takes in about 3.42 million tonnes of silt every year, with 1.17 million tonnes sluiced through its current hydraulic facilities and 900,000 tonnes through dredging.
To extend the reservoir’s life span, the agency has also proposed to construct a siltation prevention tunnel around the reservoir’s Amuping Wharf (阿姆坪) as part of the government’s Forward-looking Infrastructure Development Program.
The tunnel would help remove 640,000 tonnes of silt from the reservoir, the agency said.
AGGRESSION: China’s latest intrusions set a new benchmark for its ‘gray zone’ tactics and possibly a new pattern that it would attempt to normalize, a researcher said China’s latest military exercises represent a new challenge to Taiwan’s legal authority to demarcate its borders in the Taiwan Strait, a defense expert said, adding that the fleets in the latest exercises were likely the most powerful the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) ever assembled. The PLA conducted military exercises from Sunday last week to 6am on Friday, which encompassed large swathes of the western Pacific, including the Taiwan Strait and waters off the Philippines and Guam, National Policy Foundation associate research fellow Chieh Chung (揭仲) said on Friday. The Ministry of National Defense said that it detected 70 warship and 162 aircraft
DOMESTIC MARKET: To protect the livelihoods of local egg farmers, the government adopted a new method for releasing imported eggs, the agriculture minister said More than 54 million imported eggs will be disposed, as their expiration date has passed, Minister of Agriculture Chen Chi-chung (陳吉仲) said yesterday. Chen made the remarks at a news conference in Taipei, explaining the flow of imported eggs following recent controversies regarding the products. The ministry introduced a special egg import program to address a nationwide egg shortage earlier this year. However, controversies have risen in recent weeks. These included an accusation that the government helped some egg importing companies over others, eggs imported from Brazil that had an incorrect expiration date, and egg shipments from Brazil that were found
PACIFIC OCEAN: Defense experts have warned that the ‘Shandong,’ China’s second largest aircraft carrier, poses a serious threat to eastern Taiwan’s defenses The drills conducted by the Chinese aircraft carrier Shandong in the Western Pacific last week were more aimed at showcasing China’s military capabilities to the US rather than toward Taiwan, a Taiwanese defense expert said yesterday. Lin Yin-yu (林穎佑), an assistant professor at Tamkang University’s Graduate Institute of International Affairs and Strategic Studies, said the drills which involved dozens of warplanes sought to test China’s anti-access and area denial capabilities should the US and its allies attempt to interfere in a cross-strait conflict. Lin said that the latest Chinese drills coincided with a joint maritime exercise conducted by the US, South Korea
Thousands of bottles of Sriracha have been returned or destroyed after the discovery of excessive sulfur dioxide, a bleaching agent, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on Tuesday. About 12,600 bottles totaling 9,991.8kg of the hot sauce imported from the US by Emporium Corp (河洛企業) were flagged at the border for containing illegal levels of sulfur dioxide, the FDA said in its regular border inspection announcement. Inspectors discovered 0.5g per kilogram of the common bleaching agent and preservative, higher than the 0.03g permitted, it said. As it is the first time within six months the product has been flagged, Sriracha products from