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EghtesadOnline: Transforming traditional wells into smart wells in Zanjan Province has helped reduce the extraction of underground water, the head of the provincial water company said.

“There are 13,000 authorized wells in the city, of which 2,000 are equipped with smart electricity meters decreasing water extraction from underground resources by 20%,” Esmaeil Afshari was also quoted as saying by the Energy Ministry’s news portal.

Referring to measures to reverse the dangerous trend, he said, “Apart from sealing illegal wells, the installation of smart meters on legal wells is a priority.”

Equipping wells with the new system will help utility companies closely monitor water use online.

Smart wells are advanced wells with sensors and valves installed downhole to allow easy and systematic monitoring.

Injudicious use and waste of groundwater from legal and illegal wells have emerged as a major problem in Iran's struggle against the water crisis that has gotten worse over the past half century as precipitation declines and consumption rises.

According to the news portal, government-affiliated Power Generation, Distribution and Transmission Company installed 307,000 smart electricity meters in farms in 2018 in the first phase of the National Smart Metering Program (known as Fahm in Persian).

Renewable water resources show an appalling 20% decline over five years, down from 130 billion cubic meters in 2013 to 105 billion cubic meters now. 

Renewable resources were close to 140 bcm in 1999 and after that came the rapidly descending order ever since. It fell to 135 bcm, 130 bcm and 105 bcm in 2007, 2013 and 2017 respectively.

Annual average renewable water resource is 114 bcm, of which 70 bcm are exploitable. Iran's annual water consumption exceeds 100 , which pattern is not acceptable by both regional and international norms where people are more conscious about the value and role of the precious resource.


Zanjan Water Smart Meter