WATER inside the Angat Dam dipped further despite two low pressure systems inside the country’s area of responsibility that had brought scattered rains over the dam’s watershed early this week, prompting Department of Agriculture (DA) to start cloud seeding operations.
Bulacan Provincial Public Affairs Office focal person Maricel Cruz said that water elevation in Angat Dam “slightly slid to 174.78 meters on Thursday morning, May 9, as compared to 175.10 meters on Wednesday morning, May 8.”
The National Water Resources Board will temporarily cut the allocation for agriculture irrigation from dam to further help increase its water level.
Early this month, irrigation supply to 17 towns in Bulacan and four towns in Pampanga reduced to 20 cubic meters per second, as water elevation at the dam dropped to 179.83 meters above sea level breaching its critical low level of 180 meters above sea level (masl).
The dam’s normal water level is 212 meters, while its critical level for drinking water is 160 meters.
The Bureau of Soil and Water Management (BSWM) of the DA has started cloud seeding operations not just in Angat Dam but also over the watersheds of Ipo, and La Mesa dams.
Cloud seeding is one of the measures seen to allay possible adverse effects of the prevailing dry spell brought about by El Niño phenomenon.
Cloud seeding, a process of adding chemicals into clouds to produce rain, still depends on the seedable cloud and favorable direction of air.
Cloud seeding is a type of weather modification that aims to change the amount or type of precipitation that falls from clouds that causes rainfall. This can be made to come together and form ice crystals by seeding the atmosphere with chemicals such as silver iodide or dry ice.
Angat Dam supplies 90 percent of the domestic water supply of Metro Manila. It also supplies irrigation to 20,000 hectares of farmland in Bulacan while 2,000 hectares of Pampanga’s farmlands in Candaba and border lands of San Luis and Santa Ana also get their water supply from the dam.