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Low reservoir levels in Siem Reap affecting thousands

Authorities distribute water to people facing a shortage of clean water yesterday in Siem Reap province. Photo supplied
Authorities distribute water to people facing a shortage of clean water yesterday in Siem Reap province. Photo supplied

Low reservoir levels in Siem Reap affecting thousands

More than 1,000 families in Siem Reap province are facing clean water shortages as the water level at Baray Teuk Thla reservoir has fallen for the first time in several years due to the especially harsh drought conditions confronting the Kingdom in recent months.

The affected families reside in Siem Reap town and Svay Leu and Chi Kraeng districts, according to authorities, who began to deliver additional water supplies on Monday.

Kim Chhaihieng, deputy governor of Siem Reap province, said authorities will continue to deliver water until the rainy seasons begins.

“We are surprised to see our Baray Teuk Thla’s low water this month and this year,” said Chhoum Chhern, chief of Siem Reap town’s Teuk Vil commune.

“Every year, even in the hot season, the Baray Teuk Thla is never low . . . like this.”

Authorities are delivering some 12,000 litres of water per trip, and several trips have already been made, Chhern said.

Sem Van, a villager in Teuk Vil commune, said villagers began to experience the water shortage last month, but the condition became serious in April. “There is no water from the well,” Van said.

Mekong River Commission technical adviser Ian Thomas said the list of locations enduring water shortages would only continue to increase.

“[The] situation is already becoming critical across the whole country,” he said.

Additional reporting by Yesenia Amaro

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