The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines -- Due to extreme heat and lack of rain, the water level at the reservoir of San Roque Dam is continuing to decrease at an alarming rate so much so that it may not be enough to supply water for irrigation and electricity to farmers and residents of Tarlac and Pangasinan.
The water level at the dam in San Manuel, Pangasinan has gone down to 237.5 meters, which is way below the maximum capacity of 290 meters.
Every day, the dam's water level is decreasing by average of half a meter.
The San Roque Power Corporation used to supply electricity to Tarlac and Pangasinan for 24 hours. Now, it could only generate enough electricity for 12 hours.
Despite stringent conservation measures, the power utility however promised that it can supply water for irrigation to farmers in the two provinces until May 15.
Farmers have started harvesting their rice crops but they expressed apprehension that their next planting season will be curtailed by an impending decrease in water supply.
They appealed that the water supply disruption will not be prolonged so that it will not greatly affect their livelihood.
“Utang na yun pagsasaka namin, uutang ko pa ang pagkain namin. Wala na matitira sa susunod na cropping (We had to borrow money for farming, now we have to borrow money for our food. Nothing will remain for our next cropping season),” said Francisco Daus, a farmer from Pangasinan.
Aside from the San Roque Dam, the weather bureau PAGASA is also monitoring the water level at the Pantabangan Dam in Nueva Ecija.
The water level at Pantabangan Dam has gone down by more than 18 meters from the normal level of 221 meters. It will not be able to supply water and electricity once the level reaches 201.35 meters.