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Bulacan closely monitors the effects of plummeting Angat Dam water level to farm lands
Friday, 16 May 2014
CITY OF MALOLOS – The Provincial Government of Bulacan with the National Irrigation Administration or NIA-BANE (Bulacan, Aurora, Nueva Ecija) Irrigation Management Office strictly monitors the effects of the continuous dropping of water level of Angat Dam where it has been reported to have plummeted below the 180 meters critical level that resulted to cut off water supply for irrigation in Bulacan and Pampanga.

Gov. Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado said that government agencies with the Provincial Agriculture Office continue to observe creeks and rivers which are possible alternate source of water for irrigation in case the water in Bustos Dam is no longer sufficient.

According to Engr. Precioso Punzalan of NIA-BANE, from the total of 26, 791 ha of farm lands in the two provinces previously mentioned, there are still 5,000 ha that are planted with palay that is yet to be harvested.

“May tubig pa tayong maibababa sa loob ng isang linggo at nagre-request pa rin kami sa Napocor for another extension na makakuha ng tubig sa Angat Dam, dapat kasi April 30 pa lang cut na ‘yan eh, pinagbigyan tayo ng extension nung una na 10 cubic meter per second until may 15 or earlier if the dam's critical level is reached, at na-reach na nga pero umaasa pa rin tayo na ma-extend ulet, ” Punzalan explained.

“Harvesting period na rin naman sila kaya nagbabawas na ng water requirement. Ang magiging problema natin ay ang papasok na wet cropping season na posibleng maantala kung walang ulan o tubig irigasyon na magagamit para sa land preparation, ‘yon ang tututukan natin” Ma. Gloria Carrillo, head of PAO said.

Leopoldo Fajardo, Provincial Agriculture and Fishery Council chairman, said that they are coordinating with the PGB with regard to the present situation of water supply in the province.

“Naranasan na rin namin ‘yan nung nakaraang El Niño at ngayon ‘pag talagang dumating ‘yung banta ulet wala kaming magagawa kundi tumingala sa langit at maghintay ng ulan,” Fajardo said.

According to National Power Corporation (Napocor), the water supply for irrigation has been cut off to give way to the 90 percent requirement of water supply for domestic use in Manila in accordance to the Water Code of The Philippines.

Napocor added that Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines has already approved the clearance for cloud seeding operations in Angat dam and watershed wherein there will be 50 flights, two flight schedules per day depending on the 'seedable' clouds which started last Wednesday led by the Bureau of Soils and Water Management.

According to Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, as of today, May 16, the water level of Angat and Bustos Dams are 178.82 m and 16.29 respectively. ###

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