EghtesadOnline: There are no plans to announce restrictions on water use this summer, head of the National Water and Wastewater Engineering Company said Wednesday.
"The company has forecast water consumption to soar by 20% over the next three summer months. However, there are no plans to ration water anywhere in the country," Hamidreza Janbaz was quoted as saying by ISNA.
There may be some temporary disruptions in water supply or lower water pressure due to ruptures or maintenance operations, he said.
Average water consumption in most cities and towns has declined from 250 liters per day to 150 liters, whereas in Tehran the figure hovers around 300 liters for at least 40% of households, according to Financial Tribune.
Referring to programs to help reduce consumption, he said households should be encouraged to use domestic water-saving accessories (ranging from shower heads to taps, flush reducers to bathwater diverters) as it can cut consumption by 30%.
Janbaz went on to say that close to 233 small towns in Kerman, Fars and North Khorasan provinces are grappling with water crisis as their needs are met through underground supplies that are gradually depleting and vanishing.
Asked about water transfer plans, he said, "This cannot solve the problem in and of itself. We have made plans to transfer water from Lar, Latyan and Mamlou dams to Tehran. Not only has it not improved the situation, but demand has also been rising."
Transferring water from the Sea of Oman to North Khorasan and Sistan-Baluchestan provinces will cost an estimated $7 billion, he said, adding if consumption is cut by 10% in the three provinces there will be no need for massive investments.
Water is heavily subsidized in Iran. While urban consumers pay 43% of its real price, only 23% of the production cost are paid by the rural people. Production of one cubic meter of water for urban use costs a little less than 10,000 rials (10 cents) and supplying the same to rural areas costs higher.
According to the director of planning and economic affairs at the National Water and Wastewater Engineering Company, Masoud Khashaei, per capita consumption of water in Iran is higher than the global average.
“Water in Iran is much cheaper compared to many countries, such that the cost of water is a miniscule 0.4% of household expenses,” he said.
Caption: Water is heavily subsidized in Iran.