Water crisis averted: Angat goes above operating level but allocations still limited
The Angat Dam water level continues to recover but the facility’s water allocations for Metro Manila and irrigation are unlikely to soar soon.
“Increase in Angat’s allocations will be gradual,” said Bea Soriano, National Water Resources Board (NWRB) Policy and Program Division engineer.
Water level in Angat just rose slightly above the 180 meters minimum operating level (MOL) of the dam so it’s still unsafe to immediately jack up allocations there, she said.
For September 2019, she said NWRB approved a 40 cubic meters per second (cms) allocation of Angat water for Metro Manila.
NWRB also approved National Irrigation Administration’s proposed 30 cms allocation for next month’s irrigation of Angat service areas, she continued.
Such allocations are higher than Angat’s August 2019 quota of 36 cms and zero for Metro Manila and irrigation, respectively, she said.
“There’ll be a review to determine the allocations for October, however,” she said, indicating Angat’s quotas that month won’t be automatically higher than what NWRB approved for September.
This year, Angat Dam’s water level dipped below the MOL due to rainfall shortage amidst onslaught of drought-driving El Niño phenomenon.
Government’s protocol is to suspend release of Angat irrigation water to the dam’s agriculture service areas in Bulacan and Pampanga provinces if water reaches the MOL.
Such suspension aims to ensure water supply for Metro Manila.
Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Angat Dam’s 6 a.m. water level on Tuesday already reached 180.75 meters.
Rain and water running off into Angat are increasing water level in the dam, PAGASA noted.
Soriano said NWRB and other agencies concerned will continue monitoring conditions in Angat Dam and weather forecasts of PAGASA.
Such monitoring will help the agencies set Angat’s next allocations, she added. (PNA)
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