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September 7, 2012

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City warned of water resource shortage

SHANGHAI may face a shortage of water resources if the population continues to soar, according to a study by a local political advisory body.

The city currently has a population of 23 million, which is estimated to reach 30 million within the decade. By then, the teeming metropolis may have to resort to other drinking water sources in addition to the current Yangtze River and Huangpu River, Xinmin Evening News reported yesterday.

The current capacity of the city's water supply was about 16 million tons per day, which is able to cover the demand of 26 million people. However, once the population reaches 30 million the demand would rise to 18 million tons per day exceeding the current capacity, according to Xu Xuehong, a water and environment expert and a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Committee of Shanghai.

Meanwhile, the quality of water in the Huangpu, the main source of water for the city, continues to fall short, Xu said.

The Shanghai Water Authority had planned to use alternatives such as taking water directly from the Taihu Lake or building a new resource on the Yangtze but both have proved too difficult a task.

Since the Qingcaosha Reservoir in the Yangtze began operation last June, Shanghai has been altering its water supply structure.

By the end of 2015, 70 percent of the city's drinking water will be provided by Qingcaosha and Chenghang reservoirs of the Yangtze while the Huangpu will only take care of 30 percent.


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