Water Rationing in Colombia

The effect of global warming is wreaking havoc worldwide.

The temperatures are rising in every continent and Colombia is not an exception.

Since the beginning of the year 2024, Colombia has experienced one of the most catastrophic droughts in its entire history, leaving entire populations without drinking water while the main water reservoirs of the country dramatically reduce their water levels, leading to water rationing in numerous cities. The government of Colombia has declared that the sustainability challenges caused by climate change have begun to dramatically decrease the levels of the most important water reservoirs in the country.

The Chingaza dam in Cundinamarca reported historical levels of less than 15% in its water levels, alerting local authorities about the possibility of water rationing, droughts affecting crops and cattle from farmers in surrounding towns and possible power outages due to critical levels of hydroelectric dams.

In Bogotá, this climatic crisis has led the district government to develop new strategies to counter water scarcity through water rationing in different localities in this city, generating discontent among citizens and raising the voices of many political sectors. The situation is worrying since not just the Chingaza dam has drought most of its water, but other water bodies in the region have followed the same behavior, like Tominé and Neusa dams, which provide 25% of Bogotá’s drinking water system. Local scientists agree that the possibilities of worsening climate conditions are present, and the government must create new social and political strategies to counter its effects, which would seriously affect territories with aridity problems like Caribbean lands or the Orinoquía region. Moreover, according to researchers, these effects are already permanent, and the ecosystems would take many years to recover from the damage caused by human pollution and extractive processes that, for example, have deforested the Amazon rainforest and polluted the Magdalena River.

However, we are still able to control the actual amount of environmental impact caused on the ecosystems to reduce the possibility of generating even worse scenarios for our country. Colombia is the second most biodiverse country in the world, so care of nature is a priority. Our rivers and water bodies are an important source of natural richness and economic development that is necessary for our citizens and the environment itself. So, creating a common ground between governments, industries and societies is an obligation if we as Colombians intend to live in a country where there are no water shortages nor famines due to desertification and forest fires. Water rationing is a short-term solution to a problem that is bigger than most countries of the world can handle, so this problem must be addressed at local, regional and international level to lead to a consensus about the next steps to confront the global warming problem and its consequences, that sadly are worsening day by day without any substantial progress being made worldwide.

by Mr Diego Ubaque

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14 Comments

  • Diego Sebastián Ubaque

    The global warming is already unstoppable, the effects that we are feeling today are already permanent and sadly we will deal with the consequences in our near future. But that does not mean that we can’t do something to stop the dramatical situation that we are experiencing today in our planet with the water shortages. We still have a possibility to get a better future and maybe recover the earth and its water sources as they were before the raise of industrial activities and the global pollution. To achieve this, we must raise awareness of the importance of water, we must practice new routines to save more of this liquid and we have to be critical and choose better representatives in our governments that put first the environment and the water as a priority, this is necessary if we do not want to be a country without rivers and likes in the future.

  • Sofia

    This problem is bigger than we think and people are doing not too much about it. It’s really important to be conscious of how this problem will affect us in the future, so we have to take actions to save the water and conserve the nature.

  • Diego Poveda

    To solve this problem it is necesary to get an agreement between the governement and the great industries or companies; they are polutting the air and heating the atmosphere, this causes droughts. Also the citizens need to care more about the water and not waste it. In the same way, we need to get new technologies or ideas for keeping them in the dams.

  • Sofia

    Well, this presents an alarming view of the effects of climate change in Colombia, highlighting the serious drought that has affected the country. It underlines the drastic reduction in water levels in differents places.

    The text makes us see the need to develop political and social strategies to face these challenges, underlining the importance of cooperation between governments, industries and society to mitigate environmental impacts. It also makes an urgent call to us to help raise awareness in other people and save water and not waste it.

  • Laura Gaitan Lovera

    I think that people should be more aware about these issues since they are affecting all the population and a few years from now we wouldn’t have enough water even to survive and all that because of a neglecting attitude towards this problem that now is at least manageable. The government should try to come up with more strategies to reduce the waste of drinking water so we can still be able to use it in the future.

  • Ana Garay

    I think for the moment the rationing of water is a good solution, but it isn’t enough.
    I consider it is important that everyone helps with different estrategies that seek to keep or improve the situation.
    Also change our behavior and mentality to reduce the contamination from home and by each person.

  • Sarah

    We have to create more alternatives to reduce the use of water or create campaigns to show how we are spending it, because if we don’t control this problem now in the future it would be more difficult and maybe it would be irreversible. Think in the future and not only in the present.

  • Felipon

    Its a problem that should get a solution early, cause‘ in a long term it would be a lot more catastrophic and also there will be a lot of people dissatisfied.🗣️🔥‼️

  • Luis

    Interesting. It explains how and why water is being rationed in Colombia. It’s a good read to a better understanding of the situation in my country.

    • Mariana

      I like this topic. It has been talked about a let since some people think that water rationing is unnecesary or that climate changes is false.

      This raelly is a big problem and we must respect the rationing days, and reduce our time in the shower and start using rainwater to clean the house.

      Protecting the water and our planet is our duty, so we must take the necessary measures to spend more time on the planet without going through hunger or more drought.

  • Valentina

    The problem that Colombia is going through with water is something that must be taken responsibly.
    The government proposed different solutions to be able to enjoy the things that water offers us and we must be aware of the great impact that our actions can have for the future.

    • María Fernanda

      Many times we think that things happen for a reason, but it really is true. Perhaps, we are not aware of the ecosystem and the planet in which we live, it is very difficult to make people understand. Still we know that there are lives in the ecosystems that we have to be aware of and that Life is One and that as it is like that for us it is also like that for the animals. In certain Occasion , we run out of water but tomorrow we will not know if The entire world will be without water. We are not safe anywhere but wherever we are we have to take care of it

  • Nicolás Naranjo García.

    Although some people are bothered by the water rationing, we should understand that natural resources are not unlimited and we shouldn’t make use of them as if they were unlimited. Nevertheless, the spotlight must be set on the long term solutions like consumption habits and infraestructure, rather than taking measures which bother people and may even prompt them to consume more water the next day.

  • Luis

    Interesting, it explains how and why water is being rationed in Colombia. It’s a good read to a better understand of the situation in my country.

  • Marie Debal

    It looks like a huge sacrifice but it is worthy. Can you imagine our future without water? There is no life without water. Water is not only important for human beings but as well for the ecosystems. After these months of water rationing I got use to it. It is not a sacrifice anymore, it is a duty.

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