Heavy rainfalls in April and May caused flooding across Taiwan, but added little to reservoirs in the drought-stricken southern Taiwan, according to data from the Water Resources Agency.

Since late 2022, southern Taiwan has been facing water shortages due to the lack of typhoons and heavy rain. Tsengwen reservoir serving Tainan and Chiayi is now at less than 10% of its capacity.

The three heavy rainfalls in the past two months contributed the most to the Baoshan second reservoir in Hsinchu, with its water level increasing from less than 40% in mid-April to over 80%. Shimen reservoir in Taoyuan saw a slight increase in water level during the heavy rainfall in late April, but its capacity is still decreasing, reaching 36%. But Feitsui Reservoir in New Taipei gained little and its capacity decreased to around 50%.

In central Taiwan, Mingde reservoir gained the most from the downpours, with its water level rising from 21.75% to more than 95%. Only Hushan reservoir, other reservoirs also received replenishment from the heavy rainfalls on April 19th and May 7th. 

Following the downpour from May 18-19, rainwater flowed gradually into the reservoirs in the span three days. A chart by The News Lens shows significant rises in the water level of reservoirs in central Taiwan.

Compared with the reservoirs in the central and northern Taiwan, the reservoirs in southern Taiwan have hardly seen any increase in water level from the three heavy rainfalls. Wushantou reservoir saw a notable change in capacity but it was not due to the rainfall. Instead, the water from Tsengwen reservoir, the largest in Taiwan, had to be channeled to Wushantou reservoir meet household demand.

But with the rainwater from the catchment area flowing into the reservoirs, it can be observed that the rainfall from May 18-19 brought more water storage to the Renyitan, Nanhua, and Zengwen reservoirs compared to the previous two rainfalls.

Some information for this story came from The News Lens Chinese edition.

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TNL Editor: Bryan Chou (@thenewslensintl)

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