Environment

Mexico City – Water Shortage

One of the world’s largest cities, Mexico City is home to about 21 million people – rising to 27 million if you include the surrounding areas. About 20% of Mexico’s population lives there. By the year 2030, the authorities estimate that the population will grow to 30 million people.

Among other challenges, such a large population puts a costly strain on Mexico City’s water supplies. In fact, the parts of Mexico City’s infrastructure that supply water are crumbling. Its natural water reserves are also at risk; if trends continue, they are expected to dry out as soon as in 30 years. With so many people affected, this means one of the world’s largest water crises is in the making on the doorstep of the US.

Located more than 2,000m above sea level, the city is subject to heavy rainfall. The wet season between June and September, in particular, brings frequent flash floods.

Burst pipes aren’t the only reason that Mexico City’s sewage overflows. Rubbish disposed of on the streets often clogs pipe drains, backing up the system. That can have serious consequences quickly, since Mexico City produces about 40,000 litres of sewage every second.

Despite flooding events and heavy rainfall, the city is facing a water shortage. Much of this is because of the inefficient and ageing infrastructure of Mexico City’s water networks: some 40% of the water is lost.

As a result, many of the city’s inhabitants have an interrupted water supply, perhaps only being able to turn on the tap and get water twice a week.

Given Mexico City’s original geography, its lack of water may seem strange. The city was built on an island surrounded by a large natural lake basin. But when the Spanish colonised Mexico in the 1500s, they dried out the lake to build a bigger city.

This means that deep underground, Mexico City has fresh water reservoirs – which the city still depends on for about 40% of its water. But the shortage of water in the city means these natural water reserves are being emptied at a rate faster than they can be filled, especially during months of prolonged drought in the dry season. Projections show that the aquifers could be depleted in 30 to 50 years, if current exploitation trends continue.

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Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.9 earthquake hits the Banda Sea.

5.4 earthquake hits New Guinea, Papua New Guinea.

5.4 earthquake hits Salta, Argentina.

5.2 earthquake hits the south-western Ryukyu Islands, Japan.

5.1 earthquake hits New Guinea, Papua New Guinea.

5.0 earthquake hits Taiwan.

5.0 earthquake hits offshore Guerrero, Mexico.

5.0 earthquake hits New Guinea, Papua New Guinea.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

7.3 earthquake hits Oaxaca, Mexico.

A powerful earthquake that rattled south and central Mexico caused little apparent destruction but rekindled fears in a population that still sees daily reminders of deadly earthquakes five months ago which killed more than 300 people.

5.8 earthquake hits Oaxaca, Mexico.

5.1 earthquake hit North of Severnaya Zemlya, Russia.

5.0 earthquake hits south of Africa.

5.0 earthquake hits Oaxaca, Mexico.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.8 earthquake hits Colima, Mexico.

5.7 earthquake hits Fiji.

5.5 earthquake hits Fiji.

5.2 earthquake hits Antigua and Barbuda.

5.1 earthquake hits Samoa.

5.0 earthquake hits the Rat Islands, Aleutian Islands.

5.0 earthquake hits the Sumbawa region, Indonesia.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.6 Earthquake hits the Rat Islands in the Aleutian Islands.

6.3 Earthquake hits the Balleny Islands.

5.6 Earthquake hits Tonga.

5.4 Earthquake hits the Mid- Indian ridge.

5.3 Earthquake hits off the coast of Jalisco, Mexico.

5.3 Earthquake hits the South Indian Ocean.

5.0 Earthquake hits New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

5.0 Earthquake hits the northern Mid-Atlantic ridge.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.3 Earthquake hits Jujuy, Argentina.

5.0 Earthquake hits Fiji.

5.0 Earthquake hits northern Sumatra, Indonesia.

5.0 Earthquake hits offshore Chaipas, Mexico.

5.0 Earthquake hits Mindanao in the Philippines.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

7.9 Earthquake hits New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

The magnitude-7.9 quake struck 46 kilometres east of Taron in Papua New Guinea, the US Geological Survey said. The quake was deep, at 103 kilometres. Deeper earthquakes tend to cause less damage than shallow ones.

The USGS initially said the quake’s magnitude was 8.0, but later downgraded the strength.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said there was a threat of a tsunami in Papua New Guinea and nearby areas. A tsunami measuring less than 1 metre hit the coast of the island of New Ireland shortly after the earthquake. There were no immediate reports of damage from the tsunami or the quake, though officials were still working to contact people on the island, he said.

The quake knocked items off shelves and caused a blackout in the town of Kokopo in northeastern Papua New Guinea, Taranu said.

6.0 Earthquake hits New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

6.0 Earthquake hits the Solomon Islands.

5.8 Earthquake hits the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.7 Earthquake hits the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.7 Earthquake hits the State of Yap, Micronesia.

5.6 Earthquake hits the Peru-Brazil border region.

5.5 Earthquake hits New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

5.5 Earthquake hits the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.4 Earthquake hits Tonga.

5.4 Earthquake hits south of Fiji.

5.3 Earthquake hits near the coast of Ecuador.

5.3 Earthquake hits New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

5.3 Earthquake hits the Santa Cruz Islands.

5.2 Earthquake hits the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

Two 5.2 Earthquakes hit Tonga.

Five 5.1 Earthquakes hit New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

Four 5.1 Earthquakes hit the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.1 Earthquake hits southeast6 of the Loyalty Islands.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Solomon Islands.

5.1 Earthquake hits the southern east Pacific rise.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Anatahan region in the Mariana Islands.

5.1 Earthquake hits the southwest Indian ridge.

Two 5.0 Earthquakes hit New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

Four 5.0 Earthquakes hit the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Rat Islands in the Aleutian Islands.

5.0 Earthquake hits Chiapas, Mexico.

5.0 Earthquake hits New Britain, Papua New Guinea.

5.0 Earthquake hits northern Sumatra, Indonesia.

5.0 Earthquake hits eastern Kazakhstan.

5.0 Earthquake hits the southwest Indian ridge.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.7 Earthquake hits the Kermedec Islands off New Zealand.

5.2 Earthquake hits southeast of Easter Island.

5.1 Earthquake hits Nicaragua.

5.1 Earthquake hits Oaxaca, Mexico.

5.0 Earthquake hits Ascension Island.

5.0 Earthquake hits Fiji.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Mariana Islands.

5.0 Earthquake hits Tonga.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Santa Cruz Islands.

Environment

Mexico City Declares 3rd Day Of Traffic Cuts Over High Smog

Mexico City is ordering 40 percent of cars and trucks to stay off the streets Thursday, extending for a third day a traffic cutback aimed at lessening pollution.

Under a rule in effect through June, one-fifth of the city’s vehicles normally must stay at home on a weekday, with the day determined by license plate numbers. But on Wednesday, smog stayed above 1 and a half times acceptable limits for a third straight day, meaning an additional 20 percent of vehicles can’t be used Thursday.

Ozone, a key component of smog, reached 1.9 times acceptable limits. The metropolitan environmental commission blamed Mexico City’s typical spring weather: hot, dry weather, a lack of wind and sunny days that favor the creation of ozone.

Environment

More cars banned in Mexico City after pollution alert

More cars were ordered off Mexico City’s streets on Wednesday after a surge in pollution prompted authorities to issue the first air quality alert in 14 years.

After older vehicles were kept off the streets on Monday and Tuesday, the Environmental Commission of the megalopolis decided to expand the ban on Wednesday to include all cars with license plates that have red stickers and end in the numbers three and four.

The extraordinary measures were imposed following an increase in ozone concentration, which can cause respiratory and heart ailments.

Federal authorities ordered factories in the greater Mexico City area to slash their emissions by 40 per cent.

The last time the air quality emergency was issued was in September 2002.