PANTABANGAN, Nueva Ecija – The continuous rains dumped by Typhoon “Fabian” and the “habagat” (southwest monsoon) these past few days have caused water level to rise at the mammoth Pantabangan Dam, an irrigation official said.
Engr. Rosalinda B. Bote, National Irrigation Administration-Upper Pampanga River Integrated Irrigation Systems (NIA-UPRIIS) department manager, said incessant rains boosted the present water reserve at the dam which slightly rose to 183.41 meters on Monday from 182.32 meters last week. “Kaya kapag umuulan ay nag-ka-cut-off kami ng water releases para makapag-ipon ng tubig sa Pantabangan,” she added.
Bote said the dam’s elevation of 183.41 meters recorded on Monday was several meters higher compared to the same period last year which was pegged at 176.
“176 meters tayo last year vs 183.41 ngayon, kasi may pag-uulan naman ngayon kumpara last year na walang ulan unabis,” she said.
It would be recalled that during the third quarter of last year, NIA chief Ricardo R. Visaya approved a cloud-seeding operation to be conducted over the mammoth dam to boost its stock ahead of the dry season cropping.
She said the agency’s projection is for the dam’s elevation to reach at least Elevation 210 to 214 meters which is sufficient to hit the targeted number of hectares to be irrigated for next year.
The UPRIIS chief, however said they are optimistic to attain their irrigation service targets, noting the “projections made by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration that the months of August, September and October will be rainy.”