EghtesadOnline: Tehran's residents consume 840 million cubic meters of groundwater reserves per annum, 40 mcm more than the aquifers’ annual intake, the managing director of Tehran Province Water and Wastewater Company said.
“The subsidiary companies of TPWWC are expected to study the effects of implementing the wastewater network project on the status of Tehran aquifers, which is the state-owned company’s major concern,” Mohammad Reza Bakhtiari was also quoted as saying by Mehr News Agency.
"Groundwater reserves in Tehran Province have fallen by 150 million cubic meters per year," he said, adding that nearly 6,700 kilometers of wastewater network have so far been established in Tehran.
According to the official, about 70% of Tehran’s wastewater network have been completed, while the construction of wastewater treatment plants in the metropolis has made 40-50% progress, Financial Tribune reported.
Bakhtiari noted that while 7-8% of the country’s water reserves are used for drinking, the figure is 35% in the capital as the rate of population density is very high in Tehran.
The official added that the agriculture sector accounts for 51% of water consumption in the city and the rest is used in industrial, services and sanitation sectors.
Experts believe that low water prices have made people oblivious to the fact that they must consume water judiciously and help mitigate the effects of water shortage.
Bakhtiari told ISNA last month that the directive to raise water tariffs for consumers was ratified by Tehran City Council and approved by the Economy Council.
"Water prices for households consuming less than 30 cubic meters a month will rise by 7%, but tariffs for subscribers who exceed the limit will increase by 15%," he said. According to Bakhtiari, the new directive will take effect in November.
"The generated revenue will be spent on ventures aimed at enhancing water quality in the province," he added.
There is strong consensus that if water consumption patterns do not change, many parts of the country will turn into swathes of barren land.