CITY OF SAN FERNANDO — If expected rain water would not come this July, the water level inside Angat Dam may even break its 2010 lowest record of 157.76 meters, as the dam’s water level at around 6 a.m. Sunday, June 23, was at 159.43 meters, lower than the 159.78 meters measured on Saturday morning.
This means that the dam’s water level is barely two meters from reaching its lowest level in July 2010. The dam’s water supply is expected to go down further this week.
The dam’s normal water level is 212 meters, while its critical level for drinking water is 160 meters. Water allocated for agriculture irrigation has already been stopped since May.
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.
Metro Manila’s 90 percent of water consumption daily is sourced from Angat Dam. The Department of Agriculture said that the domestic purpose of Angat Dam’s water would surely compete with the dam’s water if it does not reach full capacity.
Angat Dam reached its lowest level at 157.76 meters in July 2010, an El Niño year, which prompted authorities to temporarily stop operations.
The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) also reported that water level in several other dams in the country likewise declined — Ipo Dam (-0.50 meters), Binga Dam (-0.21 meters), San Roque Dam (-0.47 meters), Pantabangan Dam (-0.07 meters), Magat Dam (-0.41 meters) and Caliraya Dam (-0.10 meters).
Water at the vital dam had not been replenished since the prevailing El Niño phenomenon had offset the expected rains for the season.
El Niño is likely to last up to November this year, according to Pagasa.
Weather Division head Esperanza Cayanan said they expect more rains to come in July and the water level at Angat to gradually increase at that time.