Mexico City Is On The Verge Of Running Out Of Water

A man walks around Chapultepec's lake in Mexico City on May 30, 2024. (Photo by Rodrigo Oropeza / AFP) (Photo by RODRIGO OROPEZA/AFP via Getty Images)
A man walks around Chapultepec’s lake in Mexico City on May 30, 2024. (Photo by RODRIGO OROPEZA/AFP via Getty Images)

OAN’s James Meyers
1:08 PM – Friday, May 31, 2024

Weather experts say that Mexico City could run out of drinking water by the end of June, which is called by residents “Day Zero.” 


Mexico City has struggled to bring water to its millions of residents, but now the city has dealt with three consecutive years of low rainfall and high temperatures causing time for panic. 

The Cutzamala water system, which is a series of treatment plants, reservoirs, and canals that provide water to tens of millions of people is now running almost dry. 

Meanwhile, the conditions are considered so drastic that the North American Drought Monitor classified the federal district containing Mexico City as “severe” at the end of April. According to Mexico Business News, locals expect “Day Zero” to hit them as soon as June 26th

According to CNN, local politicians have downplayed the water crisis as multiple neighborhoods have claimed that their water supply has already run out. 

With multiple widespread outages so far this year, water and electricity have become major election issues ahead of a national vote on Sunday. 

The Mexican government describes the Cutzamala system as “vital to the lives of millions of Mexicans” living in the Mexico City Metropolitan Area and the Valley of Toluca Metropolitan Area.

The system normally moves around 15 cubic meters of water a second and provides service to almost 22 million people. It’s now operating at 28% capacity, according to The Washington Post.

Additionally, poor infrastructure is also a part of the problem, with about 40% of Mexico City’s water being lost due to leaky pipes and other issues, the Post reported. 

Researchers from the National Autonomous University of Mexico said in a study that intensive water capture, using treated residual water for agriculture, and refilling aquifers with surface water, could save the Cutzamala system, according to Mexico Business News.

The study also found that only 75% of farms in the area use irrigated water, and most do not reuse the water when they can.

Mexico’s National Water Commission announced in February that it’s working on projects to improve the Cutzamala System and help supplement some of the water it is losing. 

The National Autonomous University of Mexico forecasts new heat records in some states will lead to “an increase in energy demand, poor air quality and forest fires.”

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