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News Article

Valley of Mexico To Face Indefinite Water Supply Cuts

By María José Goytia | Thu, 08/18/2022 - 10:13

Due to droughts, municipalities of Mexico City and the State of Mexico, together forming the Valley of Mexico that depends on the Cutzamala System, will face reductions in its water supply for an indefinite amount of time

The National Water Commission (CONAGUA) reported that it took additional measures due to the shortage of rainfall in the 2020, 2021 and 2022, which has led to low levels in the storage dams of the Cutzamala System, a key water supply source for the Valley of Mexico and therefore for Mexico’s most densely populated area.

As a result, CONAGUA, the Mexico City Water System (SACMEX), and the Water Commission of the State of Mexico (CAEM) agreed to reduce the water supply to 12 municipalities in Mexico City and 13 municipalities in the State of Mexico.

As of August15, Mexico City will see a reduction of 550L/s in comparison from the current volume of 8,750L/s, as a preventive measure considering the low water levels atthe Cutzamala System storage dams. The new water supply volume will therefore be 8,200L/s until further notice. In the State of Mexico, the reduction will be of 400L/s.

Among the locations affected are Mexico City's municipalities of Alvaro Obregon, Azcapotzalco, Benito Juarez, Coyoacan, Cuajimalpa, Cuauhtemoc, Iztacalco, Iztapalapa, La Magdalena Contreras, Miguel Hidalgo, Tlalpan and Venustiano Carranza.

The prolonged drought has caused the Cutzamala System, which supplies 5 million people, to hold 19.4 percent less water than its historic average storage, with its three dams filled to an average of 46.3 percent.

As of August 8, the Valle de Bravo dam had a water storage of 51.7 percent, 20.4 percent below its historical average storage. The Villa Victoria dam held 34.9 percent of its storage, 25.5 percent below its historical average. Meanwhile, the El Bosque dam maintained 46.3 percent of its storage, 12 percent below its historical average.

In response to the reduction, SACMEX is preparing 18 permanent and 32 additional water pumps to reinforce the supply with pipes in the affected municipalities. It will also work on the rehabilitation of 17 wells, round-the-clock monitoring of wells and will implement an operation of 200 pipes to freely supply water to the population.

This is not the first time that the Valley of Mexico faces a reduction in its water supply. CONAGUA stated that the 8,200L/s water flow is the same that was supplied from June 12, 2021, to Jan. 31, 2022. The reduction represents 2.4 percent of the total daily supply received by Mexico City.

Notably, 75 percent of the water supply for the Valley of Mexico comes from various sources, as only 25 percent depends on the Cutzamala System. To address the water supply reduction, CONAGUA and the governments of the State of Mexico and Mexico City are coordinating to avoid causing problems for the local population.

In the coming days, Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum and Alfredo del Mazo, Governor of the State of Mexico, will present the Integral Drinking Water Plan, which contains actions to increase the supply to the Mexico City Metropolitan Area in the short and medium term.

In addition, meetings between CONAGUA, SACMEX and CAEM will be held biweekly to evaluate how the situation develops. 

The authorities continue to urge the population to make more efficient use of water as the main measure to cope with this dry season.

The data used in this article was sourced from:  
El Universal, La Razón de México, El Financiero, La Jornada
Photo by:   Pixabay
María José Goytia María José Goytia Journalist and Industry Analyst