Officials of Water Supplies Department visit Dongjiang water supply facilities

The Director of Water Supplies, Mr Ma Lee-tak, and representatives of the Water Supplies Department (WSD) in the Operation and Management Technical Co-operation Sub-group of the Dongjiang Shenzhen Water Supply System held a meeting with officials from the Department of Water Resources of Guangdong Province (DWRGD) and visited the Dongjiang water supply facilities in Guangdong Province on April 21 and 22.

The WSD exchanged views with the DWRGD on climatic changes, including the impact of global warming on the long-term water resources in China. The DWRGD reiterated that it would take appropriate measures to ensure the adequate supply of Dongjiang water to meet Hong Kong's needs.

The Operation and Management Technical Co-operation Sub-group of the Dongjiang Shenzhen Water Supply System comprises officials from the DWRGD and WSD from Hong Kong.  Meetings of the subgroup are held regularly to discuss matters concerning the supply of Dongjiang water to Hong Kong. In view of the recent drought situation on the Mainland, the WSD paid special visits to the Taiyuan Pumping Station and Xinfengjiang Reservoir and obtained an update on the latest drought conditions from the Guangdong officials.

The DWRGD officials indicated that with the concerted efforts by the hydropower generation operator to reduce the use of water for hydropower, the flow quantity regulation measures were implemented successfully in Dongjiang last year. The latest storage figures of the three reservoirs –Xinfengjiang, Fengshuba and Baipenzhu - were 5,460 million cubic metres (mcm), 900 mcm and 220 mcm respectively. Both the water level and flow rate of the section of Dongjiang immediately upstream of the intake point of Dongjiang water for importation to Hong Kong were as anticipated. With the coming of the rainy season, the flow rate of the Dongjiang as well as the reservoirs' storage will increase, further enhancing the security of the water supply to Hong Kong. 

At the moment, works on the integrated flow regulation enhancement plan for the above three reservoirs, and on the establishment and implementation of the all-year- round flow regulation measures for the Dongjiang river basin, have started with a view to further enhancing the water-supplying capability of the Dongjiang as well as enhancing the security of water supply to Hong Kong.  Moreover, water quality protection works are being enhanced through the concerted efforts of DWRGD and the Environmental Protection Department of Guangdong Province.

According to the latest information from the Guangdong Meteorological Bureau, the average rainfall in Guangdong Province from January to March this year was 205.9 millimetres, which was 7% more than that of a normal year. The average rainfall in the Dongjiang catchment during the period was 233.6 mm, which was 27.8% more than in the same period last year, and 0.6% more than the long-term average value.

The WSD promulgated in October 2008 the total water management strategy which aims to manage the demand and supply in an integrated, multi-sectoral and sustainable manner. The WSD is now actively implementing various initiatives under the strategy to promote water conservation among the public, including promotion of water conservation at schools. The WSD has launched the "Water Conservation Starts from Home" campaign to educate primary school students on the concept of protection of water resources.

Meanwhile, a programme to retrofit government buildings and schools with water saving devices is being implemented. To promote the use of water efficient devices, the WSD has rolled out a voluntary Water Efficiency Labelling Scheme (WELS). The WELS will cover various types of commonly used plumbing fixtures and water-consuming appliances. The first group of products for implementation of the WELS was showers for bathing, for which registration has already begun in September 2009. The WSD is now working on the inclusion of water taps in the WELS.

Ends/Thursday, April 22, 2010
Issued at HKT 19:22