Istanbul has 45 days of water left in reservoirs, expert warns

A lack of rain and increased water consumption since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic have contributed to a sharp drop in water levels in Turkish dams, with experts forecasting reserves in Istanbul to last only 45 more days. In Ankara, mayor said the city had 110 days' worth of water left.

This aerial picture shows Güzelce aqueduct on the part of the Alibeyköy dam in Istanbul.

Duvar English

Istanbul has water to last for only 45 days as the dams are 19 percent full, with only 138 million cubic meters of water, said the head of the Chamber of Chemical Engineers on Jan. 5.

Ali Uğurlu said that if the drought continues to last, environmental and health concerns are awaiting Istanbulites, reported online news portal Bianet.

On Jan. 5, 2019, Istanbul's damns were recorded as being 39.03 percent full.

Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu has been urging people to save water. He even launched a social media campaign last month, sharing a video depicting different ways on how Istanbulites could economize on water usage.

He encouraged residents to turn off the water while brushing their teeth or shaving, to turn down water valves feeding into sinks, and to install taps that allow lower usage.

In the capital Ankara, Mayor Mansur Yavaş said on Jan. 5 the city had 110 days' worth of water left.

“The water level of our dams decreased to 20 percent and we have 110 days' worth of water left,” Yavaş tweeted, saying he will propose a plan to the municipal council which seeks to cut water consumption.