Cyprus Mail

No pressure on desalination plants despite low rainfall

The average water level in reservoir is currently at 38 per cent

By Annette Chrysostomou
Desalination plants have not yet had to run at full capacity even though rain has been light so far this winter, a water official said on Thursday.
Acting head of the water development department Andreas Manolis said while some of the plants were running at full capacity others were only operating at half capacity.
“The situation is actually better than last year when we had ten per cent less water in the dams,” he said.
The average water level in the Cyprus dams is currently 38 per cent, compared to 27.7 per cent at the same time last year, though Kouris dam, the biggest, has slightly less water (17.8 per cent) than in December 2014 (19 per cent).
Like this year, there had been little rain by December last year, but heavy rainfall in January, February and March made up for it.
“The meteorological services cannot forecast more than five days ahead,” Manolis explained, “so we revise our plans at the end of the winter.”
At the moment, the four desalination plants produce a little less than 150,000 m3/day (cubic metres per day) of water, while they are capable of producing 220,000 m3/day at full capacity. The cost of producing one cubic metre is around €1.
Some rain has been forecast for this weekend at least. On Friday the weather will be mainly sunny early, but cloudy in the afternoon with rain and isolated thunderstorms expected during the night.
On Saturday, it will be mostly cloudy with showers and isolated thunderstorms likely. On the highest peaks of Troodos there may be sleet or light snow. Temperatures are expected to fall until Saturday followed by a small rise on Sunday.

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