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Water reserves at record low levels, shortage looms

Date Posted: 2004-02-19

Water levels in both prefecture and government operated dams are at record low levels, and the meteorological agency says there is no relief in sight.

With Kanna Dam at less than 50 percent of its capacity, and prefecture operated dams all at about 54 percent, the Okinawa Prefecture Water Shortage Measure Committee has issued a warning stating that a serious water shortage this year is a real possibility, and urges residents to save water in any way possible.

ďAt Kanna Dam, the bottom is visible for the first time since the dam was completed and that means that the water level is more than eight meters below normal,Ē an official at Okinawa General Bureau said.

Zamami Village, which suffers chronically from any water shortage, is worst off. Itís single dam is filled to only 24 percent of its capacity and the water supply to local residents is cut off 12 hours a day.

With the year only in the beginning, and the typhoon season -- an important source of water -- still far away, prefecture officials worry that this year might be worst in recent memory.

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