Unprecedented water rationing in Chile’s capital due to record-breaking drought
Chile has been suffering from drought for over a decade now, and this year will be the 13th for the South-American country. On Monday officials announced new measures to ration water for the largest city in the county — the capital of Santiago.
Governor of Santiago metro area Claudio Orrego said this during press conference:
A city can't live without water. And we're in an unprecedented situation in Santiago's 491-year history where we have to prepare for there to not be enough water for everyone who lives here.
This is the first time in history that Santiago has a water rationing plan due to the severity of climate change. It's important for citizens to understand that climate change is here to stay. It's not just global, it's local.
Water rationing for the city with population over 6 million people will include four-tier alert system. The lowest green level includes public service announcements. Highest tier means water cuts up to 24 hours for almost 2 million customers. Cuts planned for every 12, 6 or 4 days. Certain areas would be exempt.
Current water crisis haven’t been a surprise for the Chile government. Prolonged drought caused water supply in the Maipo and Mapocho rivers to drop. If nothing will be done by 2060 water availability in the northern and central Chile could drop up to 50% from current levels.