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Water rationing implemented in Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Miaoli

Water rationing implemented in Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Miaoli

Taipei, March 20 (CNA) Taoyuan, Hsinchu and Miaoli counties in northern Taiwan have introduced night-time water rationing, which will likely be maintained until around the end of April or early May, as Taiwan continues to battle a drought, Economics Minister Chang Chia-juch said Wednesday. Since March 15, the three counties have been flashing a "yellow" light in the Water Resources Agency's (WRA's) five-color coded system, indicating that the water supply there is tight, Chang told reporters just before a legislative hearing. This means that first-stage water rationing must be implemented, reducing the water pressure to consumers every day between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m., said Chang, under whose ministry the WRA falls. During those hours, the water pressure will drop 10 percent, which will not affect people's daily lives, he added. Kaohsiung City in southern Taiwan is also expected to start flashing a yellow light by March 22, the minister said. Meanwhile, Premier Jiang Yi-huah paid an inspection visit Wednesday to Shihmen Reservoir in Taoyuan County, which supplies mainly New Taipei City, Taoyuan, and Hukou in Hsinchu. The premier said that if the drought continues, those areas that are under first-stage water rationing may have to proceed to the second stage around April 10. "The exact date will be announced by the Water Resources Agency," he said. Second-stage water rationing, justified by a blue light in the WRA system, means that the supply of water to fountains will be cut and will be reduced to big consumers. A red light signals a need for third-stage rationing, under which water is supplied to consumers on a rotational basis. Weather forecasters have predicted that Taiwan will experience lower than average rainfall in the next few weeks before the beginning of the plum rain season in May. Rainfall on the island has been scant since February, with Central Weather Bureau data showing accumulated precipitation of 37.9 millimeters in Taipei between Feb. 1 and March 17, compared with the usual average of 262 mm for that period. The Taipei City government on Wednesday began free distribution of water-saving kits for household faucets and toilets, as part of its efforts to conserve water resources. Each household in the city is entitled to one free kit, which is available at the Taipei Water Department's branch offices. (By Lin Meng-ju, Chiu Chun-chin, Claudia Liu, Yang Li-yun and Elizabeth Hsu) /pc


Updated : 2021-06-16 19:24 GMT+08:00