HCM CITY — Residents and businesses in HCM City should become aware of the need to protect groundwater and take steps to do so, experts say.
One of the main steps is to use potable water supplied by the city, they add.
A core message to this effect was generated at a seminar held recently by the HCM City Women’s Newspaper and the Sài Gòn Water Supply Corporation (SAWACO) to mark the World Water Day that falls on March 22.
Officials of the corporation said that massive overexploitation has caused the groundwater levels in the city to decrease, leading to water pollution and saltwater intrusion in many areas.
Since 2017, 100 per cent of HCM City residents have had access to clean water, they said, noting that SAWACO was in charge of supplying water to all parts of the city except Củ Chi District.
One of SAWACO’s most challenging tasks is to install water metres for people and understand why many refuse to use them after installation, the seminar heard.
HCM City has more than 1.5 million water metres at present, but more than 173,000 are not in use, with the unused metres mostly located in Hóc Môn, Bình Chánh, Gò Vấp, Bình Thạnh and 12 districts.
This is partly related to ongoing groundwater extraction, experts said, adding that two main groups were mainly responsible for this: enterprises and residents using groundwater for daily life, production and irrigation.
Experts stressed the need to raise locals’ awareness of the consequences of excessive groundwater exploitation and encourage the use of clean water.
They also said that all measures taken by relevant authorities had to be synchronized to avoid overlap and make them more effective. The city should also prepare a plan to reduce the number of wells exploiting groundwater, they added. — VnExpress News
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