Metropolitan dam levels alarmingly low
The average volume of water, relative to total capacity, of dams that provide fresh water to İstanbul, Ankara, İzmir and Bursa had decreased to just 10.4 percent on Tuesday; by comparison, during the same period last year the dams were at 35.8 percent of
The State Waterworks Authority (DSİ) stated that by Aug. 28, 2007, the average level in dams supplying drinking water for İstanbul, Bursa, İzmir and Ankara was 22.8 percent, 18.3 percent, 13.9 percent and 3 percent respectively. The averages for last year were 64.1 percent in İstanbul, 53.2 percent in Bursa, 40.1 percent in İzmir and 19.9 percent in Ankara.
The water levels of dams in Ankara are notably low. Five of the seven dams that supply water to the capital are currently in use, the Çubuk 1 and Bayındır dams are not in use. Among the five active dams, Çamlıdere, which has a 1.3768 billion cubic meter maximum capacity, is the capital's largest water reserve.
Çamlıdere dam, not only the largest but also the highest quality water supply of Ankara, is currently at just 3 percent of capacity. The level of water in the Çubuk 1, Çubuk 2, Bayındır, Kurtboğazı, Çamlıdere, Eğrekkaya and Akyar dams is 30.6 percent, 7.2 percent, 50.7 percent, 15.2 percent, 2.1 percent, 5.1 percent and 5.6 percent respectively.
Lowest level of last 30 years
DSİ officials noted that water levels in the dams that the water supply for Ankara is at the lowest level seen in the last 30 years. According to the DSİ, the average water consumption of Ankara is between 700,000 and 800,000 cubic meters per day during the winter and 1.5 million cubic meters per day in the summer due to higher irrigation demands.
In light of the low water levels, Ankara Mayor Melih Gökçek called for water conservation efforts in the capital. Gökçek noted that following the call for conservation Ankara's daily consumption of 850,000 cubic meters dropped to 670,000 cubic meters. He added that their goal was to reduce consumption even further to 600,000 cubic meters daily.
Looking at the six dams supplying fresh water to İstanbul, Ömerli dam is at 18.4 percent; Alibey, 0.4 percent; Durusu, 41.6 percent; Büyükçekmece, 8 percent; Darlık, 30.1 percent; and Sazlıdere, 25.5 percent -- as of Aug. 28. The water level in the Doğancı dam that supplies drinking water to Bursa hovers around 18.3 percent, while the Balçova and Tahtalı dams in İzmir are currently at 23.9 percent and 13.6 percent of capacity.
İstanbul mixes seawater with fresh water
İstanbul Mayor Kadir Topbaş noted that sea water will be added to the system after it has been purified for use as drinking water.
Topbaş underlined at a press conference yesterday that addressing the water shortage is one of İstanbul's priorities, stating that there are already new water projects under way. He went on to say that İstanbul is experiencing its driest year in almost 80 years, however the municipality had so far not had to apply water cuts.
Topbaş asserted that the water reserves of İstanbul would be sufficient until November even if there is no rain. He added that since water levels in the dams have decreased to around 22 percent of capacity, everyone should try to conserve water. Rainwater collection projects have also been initiated, Topbaş emphasized. "There are some complex procedures related to using sea water as a drinking source. We will mix it with fresh water after the purification process. In the first phase we plan to generate 350,000 cubic meters per day. As daily consumption rises we may use up to 2.5 million cubic meters," Topbaş said.
Today's Zaman Last Mod: 30 Ağustos 2007, 15:39