Extreme Drought in Puerto Rico: Lesson Learned


Normally Puerto Rico receives an average of 72 inches of rainfall per year. For two consecutive years, rainfall was significantly less than the average. In 2013 the overage rainfall recorded was 20% less than the average. In 2014 the drought was worst. In fact, the Government of Puerto Rico had already announced the implantation of water rationing. However, in late August, 2014 tropical waves brought enough rainfall to restore minimum operational levels of key reservoirs. In 2015, Puerto Rico suffered an exceptional drought with the aggravating factor that reservoirs had not recovered due to the droughts of the two previous years.


Carl Axel P. Soderberg, P.E.
International Advisory Council
Interamerican Association of Sanitary and Environmental Engineering