Sri Lanka mulls water rationing, savings as shortages loom

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka may have to use financial instruments to encourage water saving and even resort to rationing as climate change-induced disruption of rainfall patterns lead to water scarcity in future, an expert warned.

Water shortages are promoting migration to urban areas from rural areas the world over, said Herath Manthrithilake, senior researcher and head of the International Water Management Institute’s ‘Sustainable Development Initiative’.

The water crisis is considered the third highest global risk and could soon to be Sri Lanka’s worst nightmare, Manthrithilake told a forum on Sri Lanka 2030 climate pledge with a focus on water and food security.

Sri Lanka needs to be concerned as predicted shifts in rainfall patters could lead to diminishing water supplies while temperatures rise, he told the forum held by the Rain Forest Rescue International and Centre for Humanitarian Affairs.

As a solution to future shortages restrictions may have to be imposed on water usage, like rationing, even in the case of pipe-borne water, Manthrithilake said.

“We need to use only what is needed.”

In some areas water is available but not readily accessible. 

There was a need to prevent water leakage and wastage, practices that can even start from home, Manthrithilake said.

 Water savings could be encouraged where financial instruments could be used, he said, along with recycling water and using different quality water for different purposes like waste water from the kitchen for irrigation.
(COLOMBO, December 07, 2018)





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