Rome, City of Ancient Aqueducts, Faces Water Rationing

Drought has lowered the level of the Tiber River, and Rome officials are considering rationing drinking water. Credit Gianni Cipriano for The New York Times
ROME — Rome’s cold, clean water has flowed through ancient aqueducts, gurgled in baroque fountains and poured incessantly from thousands of the 19th-century spouts that still grace the city streets. For millenniums, water has symbolized Rome’s dominion over nature, its engineering prowess and deep, seemingly inexhaustible spring of good fortune.
“It’s a sign of abundance, but also it’s a sign of power,” said Guido Giordano, a geologist who specializes in water at University Roma Tre. “Since the foundational myth of Romulus and Remus coming from the river, water is inherent to the foundation of Rome.”
And now it is indicative of its latest fall.
A severe drought and sweltering temperatures have led city officials to consider rationing drinking water for eight hours a day for a million and a half Rome residents.
The water crisis has become yet another sign of man being at the mercy of an increasingly extreme climate


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