News

Slight increase at Mona, Hermitage; water level still critical despite rain

BY KIMONE FRANCIS Observer online reporter francisk@jamaicaobserver.com

Tuesday, August 26, 2014    

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THERE has been a slight increase at water catchment facilities serving the Corporate Area but not enough to ease the shortfall caused by the prolonged drought, according to the National Water Commission's (NWC) corporate public relations manager Charles Buchanan.

Speaking with the Observer yesterday, Buchanan said that the catchments saw a two to three per cent increase between Friday and Monday after the island received heavy showers and thunderstorms.

He said the Hermitage Dam had an increase of two per cent, while the Mona Reservoir had a three per cent increase, although both are "still in critically low positions".

Buchanan said the Hermitage dam is just at a 45 per cent mark as of yesterday morning, while the Mona Dam hovers at just 27 per cent.

"The increases are welcomed, but still not enough to counter the current drought," said Buchanan.

"We need rivers to flow heavy to have any significant impact on storage levels," Buchanan said, adding "they need to flow at a high state for several days to have watersheds being replenished to have any great impact".

In a statement to the nation in July, Minister of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change Robert Pickersgill had said that inflows into the Hermitage Dam stood at six million gallons per day, down from more than 18 million during the wet season.

He said the Mona Reservoir stood at 4.8 million gallons per day, adding that that figure was among the lowest since the construction of the Yallahs pipeline in 1986.

Meanwhile, the Meteorological Service of Jamaica has forecast scattered afternoon showers and thunderstorms across most parishes for the next two days.

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