Brazilians hoard water, preparing for rationing

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Brazilians are hoarding water in their apartments, drilling homemade wells and taking other emergency measures to prepare for forced rationing that appears likely and could leave taps dry for up to five days a week because of a drought.

In São Paulo, the country's largest city with a metropolitan area of 20 million people, the main reservoir is at just 6 percent of capacity with the peak of the rainy season now past.

Other cities in Brazil's heavily populated southeast such as Rio de Janeiro face less dire shortages but could also see rationing.

Uncertainty over the drought and its consequences on jobs, public health and overall quality of life have further darkened Brazilians' mood at a time when the economy is struggling and President Dilma Rousseff's popularity is at an all-time low.

After January rains disappointed, and incentives to cut consumption fell short, São Paulo officials warned their next step could be to shut off customers' water supply for as many as five days a week - a measure that would likely last until the next rainy season starts in October, if not longer.

State officials say they have not yet decided whether or when to implement such rationing, in part because they are still hoping for heavy rains in February and March. Indeed, thunderstorms in recent days have caused lakes to rise a bit.

Still, independent projections suggest that São Paulo's main Cantareira reservoir could run out of water as soon as April without drastic cuts to consumption.

As such, the race is on to secure water while it lasts.

Large hospitals in São Paulo are installing in-house water treatment and recycling centers, among other measures, to make sure they can still carry out surgeries and other essential tasks if regular supply stops.

Meanwhile, companies are competing with each other to secure deliveries from large water tanker trucks, which have already become a common sight on São Paulo's gridlocked streets.

"It's like seeing 10 liters in your gas tank and knowing you won't make it to the next station," said Stefan Rohr, environmental director for industry group Ciesp in Campinas, a metropolitan area of more than 3 million people just north of São Paulo.

Many large water-intensive industries, including beverages, cellulose and steel, long ago made contingency plans to truck in water or use underground wells, which may stave off a full-fledged economic disaster.

But smaller ones, ranging from beauty salons and restaurants to car washes and light industry, may have to close or severely restrict activity.

"The economic impact will be job losses," Rohr said.







Theres enough water in Canada for all the big bootied Brazilian women. Just saying. Phone Post 3.0

that's crazy.  the irony of telling customers that you're going to ration water is that their first instinct is to save as much as they can causing consumption to go up.  It sounds like Brazil is in terrible shape.

clattymine -


that's crazy.  the irony of telling customers that you're going to ration water is that their first instinct is to save as much as they can causing consumption to go up.  It sounds like Brazil is in terrible shape.

Exactly what i thought. Phone Post 3.0

That first pic of the fish is insane!

wouldn't you just fill up barrels and bathtubs during the 2 days water was available?

those dead fish are gonna reek

where does all their water come from?

I prefer to live by the source of a strong spring and snowfall fed river...

I bet bang bros is loading up hundreds maybe thousands of cases of water and transporting it down there as we speak and they are going to film a shitload of brazilian girls getting stuffed for some aquafina tall boys! Phone Post 3.0

TFK_Dirt24d - I bet bang bros is loading up hundreds maybe thousands of cases of water and transporting it down there as we speak and they are going to film a shitload of brazilian girls getting stuffed for some aquafina tall boys! Phone Post 3.0

Lol

clattymine -


that's crazy.  the irony of telling customers that you're going to ration water is that their first instinct is to save as much as they can causing consumption to go up.  It sounds like Brazil is in terrible shape.

Sounds like brazil, actually.

Mark Phone Post 3.0

It's all lies by the Americans and the Jews to deflect from the rising glory of the BRIC countries! First it was Russia, then China, now Brazil and India!

Those who know, know via top international DJ's.

-EY

. Phone Post

I love me some Brazil.

Just seen an article saying there are 1 million estimated people in brazil on crack..wtf

Are they gonna drink that poo poo water out in the bay that the Olympic boaters are supposed to race on ?

Cool, the fishing should be great.