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Dams across Mexico are at well below full capacity. The Solis dam in Acámbaro, Guanajuato, hasn't been at full capacity since 2018. Dams across Mexico are at well below full capacity. The Solis dam in Acámbaro, Guanajuato, hasn't been at full capacity since 2018.

Water commission issues drought warning

Many of the nation's dams are at below 50% of their capacity

The National Water Commission (Conagua) has called on citizens and all three levels of government to use water responsibly as more than 70% of the country is currently in drought.

There has been little rain in Mexico in the first months of 2021, prompting Conagua chief Blanca Jiménez Cisneros to urge people to implement water-saving measures.

According to the federal water agency, many of the nation’s dams are at below 50% of their capacity.

At a press conference on Thursday, Jiménez said that people’s water use has generally increased during the coronavirus pandemic due to the increase in washing to control spread of the virus. That trend, coupled with the lack of rain, has caused dam levels to decrease significantly, she said.

Among the states most affected are Guerrero, Guanajuato, Michoacán and Oaxaca, where farmers have had limited water for irrigation.

The average capacity of the main dams that feed the water system supplying Mexico City and México state is at 45.2%, the lowest level in 25 years and a 23% reduction compared to a year ago.

With water in short supply in much of the country, Conagua has delivered almost 40 million liters of drinking water to vulnerable communities so far this year. Drought conditions are expected to continue in 2021 although the rainy season, which usually begins in May or June, should bring some relief.

Jiménez said that Conagua is implementing a plan to mitigate the drought’s effects and that the commission will launch a publicity campaign to promote water-saving measures in a variety of settings.

Source: AS (sp) 

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