FOLLOWING the heavy rains over the past weeks, the Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD) said that their water production is now almost stable.
MCWD public affairs manager Charmaine Rodriguez-Kara said that the current daily water production is already at 209,000 to 210,000 cubic meters per day. MCWD’s normal water production is at 225,000 cubic meters per day.
“Our supply of water padung na mo (is on its way to) normalize. We only have a deficit of some 15,000 to 16,000 cubic meters per day,” she told Sun.Star Cebu in an interview yesterday.
MCWD’s water production has decreased over the past months due to the mild El Niño being experienced in the country. The agency could only generate at least 193,000 cubic meters of water every day.
While MCWD’s water production has increased, Kara disclosed yesterday that they are storing or hoarding portions of its water supply in anticipation of the continuation of the dry spell.
At the Jaclupan Weir in Talisay City, for example, which is one of MCWDs water sources, Kara said that out of the 30,000 cubic meters of water it can produce daily, the water district is only releasing 28,000 cubic meters of water.
At the Buhisan Dam in Cebu City, on the other hand, Kara said MCWD is only pumping out 3,000 cubic meters of water per day out of the 7,000 cubic meters of water it produces daily.
With this, Kara said there will still be some areas within MCWD’s franchise areas that will have to deal with limited water supply of only three to six hours per day.
These include, among others, elevated portions of Barangays Capitol Site, Kalunasan and Lahug in Cebu City.
MCWD’s franchise areas include the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu and Talisay, and the towns of Cordova, Compostela, Liloan and Consolacion.
According to Kara, there is a need to store portions of MCWDs water because once dry spell occurs the water from the tributaries of Buhisan Dam and that of the Jaclupan Weir will immediately drop.
With the absence of rain, MCWD cannot immediately recharge its production.
Kara said MCWD is appealing to the public to store water.
“We are also asking them to make water conservation a habit,” she said.
The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Science Administration (Pagasa), for their part, is also advising the public to conserve water.
Engr. Oscar Tabada, chief meteorologist of Pagasa Visayas Field Office, said the dry spell is expected to last until next year.
The dry period, which began in October 2014, is expected to last until May 2016.
In its latest forecast, Pagasa said that starting today until July 24, the weather will be sunny and hot.
The El Niño that hit the country is already the longest phenomenon.
Usually, Tabada said that the El Niño or warm climate phase lasts for only about six to seven months.
Even in the wake of the dry spell typhoons will sometimes occur, which Tabada cautioned as even “more destructive.”