Water use in Kanto may be restricted due to dry August, says ministry
Water levels in dams in the Tonegawa River drainage system, which serves as a major source of water for the Tokyo metropolitan area, have fallen due to unusually low rainfall and high temperatures this August, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism says.
The Kanto Regional Development Bureau of the ministry said Friday that water storage rate in eight dams in the Tonegawa river system has fallen to 40%, the third lowest rate ever recorded for the period, TBS reported. The ministry added that the storage rate was now equivalent to that of 2001 when water usage restrictions were imposed
As a result of the shortages, the bureau held an emergency meeting this week at which it drew up a plan to require residents and businesses in the region to cut their water usage by 10% from Sept 11 at 9 a.m. If the restrictions are imposed, it will mark the first time such a step has been taken since until 2001.
According to the bureau, the largest dam in the system, the Yagisawa Dam in Gunma Prefecture, requires a water level of 816.8 meters above sea level in order to supply tap water. It added that the dam’s current water level is 818.93 meters above sea level, having fallen 56 centimeters from the previous day.