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Taiwan’s Zengwen Reservoir sitting at below 11% capacity

Country’s largest reservoir nearly empty as drought continues

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The Zengwen Reservoir has almost bottomed out amid an ongoing drought. (Tainan City Government photo)

The Zengwen Reservoir has almost bottomed out amid an ongoing drought. (Tainan City Government photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Zengwen Reservoir, Taiwan's largest reservoir by volume, on Tuesday (April 20) saw its water level drop below 11 percent capacity after it collected merely 10 millimeters of rainfall over the last two days.

As the country continues to cope with its worst drought in 56 years, major reservoirs in central and southern regions have nearly bottomed out. Many counties and cities, including Hsinchu, Miaoli, Taichung, and Changhua, have been forced to introduce water rationing measures as a result.

Speaking to media on Tuesday, Water Resources Agency (WRA) official Zou Hau-Gui (鄒漢貴) confirmed that the Zengwen Reservoir in Chaiyi County is at just 10.96 percent of total capacity. He said the decrease in water storage level was the result of limited precipitation and water being diverted to the nearby Wushantou Reservoir.

Zou pointed out that weather authorities are on standby for an artificial rain stimulation operation. However, higher chances of natural rainfall are necessary for the measure to be effective, he explained.

According to data released by WRA's Southern Region Water Resources Office, the Wushantou Reservoir was down to 34.94 percent of its capacity at 11 a.m. Tuesday. The Nanhua Reservoir in Tainan had also plummeted to just 25.03 percent.

Taiwan’s Zengwen Reservoir sitting at below 11% capacity
Upper catchment area of Zengwen Reservoir almost completely dry. (CNA photo)