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Although Brazil's rainy season should start in November, Cantareira is expected to dry up at about the same time, given an estimated 1% drop in capacity per week.
Sabesp has implemented a water conservation rebate program that gives customers a discount for decreasing water use, in an effort to combat rapidly dropping reservoir levels. It is also considering extracting deeply settled water - known as dead volume water - for a second time this year. The company, however, has not opted to impose water rationing.
Following high temperatures and a lack of rain at the beginning of the year, the water system fell below 10% of capacity on May 6 and hit a previous record low of 8.2% the following week.
Sabesp implemented emergency measures by installing pumps to extract "dead volume" water and, by May 16, its capacity had increased to 26.7%. The reservoir capacity, however, has been falling ever since.