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19 of big reservoirs’ storage less than 50% of normal

The most worrisome storage position is for three major dams: Govind Sagar (Bhakra), Pong dam (Beas), and Sardar Sarovar. While Govind Sagar is 73 percent, Pong Dam is 58 percent of the normal storage levels.

IANS | New Delhi |

Of the 130 large reservoir storages monitored by the Central Water Commission (CWC), 19 reservoirs have storage less than or equal to 50 percent compared to the average of last 10 years, data compiled till September 2 has shown.

Of the 130, there are 27 reservoirs that have storage less than or equal to 50 percent with respect to last year, according to CWC data.

The most worrisome storage position is for three major dams: Govind Sagar (Bhakra), Pong dam (Beas), and Sardar Sarovar. While Govind Sagar is 73 percent, Pong Dam is 58 percent of the normal storage levels.

Sardar Sarovar reservoir has 65 percent live storage compared to the average of the last 10 years.

The overall storage position is less than the corresponding period of last year in the country as a whole and is also less than the average storage of the last 10 years during the corresponding period.

Till last week, the situation was better with storage levels on par or better compared to both last year’s and average 10 years’ data, CWC data has shown.

The live storage available in these reservoirs is 111.691 BCM, which is 65 percent of the total live storage capacity. However, last year at the same time, it was 140.051 BCM and the average of the last 10 years’ live storage was 119.026 BCM.

Thus, the live storage is 80 percent of the corresponding period of last year and 94 percent of the average of the last ten years.

These reservoirs cater to agriculture needs for the rabi season and a few of them are also used for hydropower generation. Precariously low levels with barely a few days of rains due from southwest monsoon can prove problematic in rabi season.

“Compared to other regions, storage in southern region during the current year is better than the storage of corresponding period of the last year and also is better than the average storage of last ten years during the corresponding period,” said a CWC official.

India has had an overall 24 percent deficit in August rainfall that pushed the total rainfall from June 1 till August 31 to 9 percent less than normal.

“We are banking on rains in ‘bhaado’ (month of Bhadrapada as per the Hindu calendar), we have the whole of September and hope our reservoirs will be full by the end of monsoon season,” said a Minister from one of the eastern states.

In the northern region, comprising Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, and Rajasthan, CWC monitors eight reservoirs with a total live storage capacity of 19.17 BCM.

These reservoirs have 10.36 BCM storage, which is 54 percent of the total live storage capacity of these reservoirs.

As per CWC data, the storage during the corresponding period of last year was 76 percent, and the average storage of the last 10 years during the corresponding period was 81 percent of the live storage capacity of these reservoirs.

The eastern region that includes Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal, Tripura, and Nagaland, has 20 reservoirs under CWC monitoring with a total live storage capacity of 19.96 BCM.

Storage levels in these reservoirs are 10.54 BCM, which is 53 percent of the total live storage capacity of these reservoirs; last year was 73 percent and the average storage of the last 10 years was 63 percent.

The western region for Gujarat and Maharashtra has 42 reservoirs under CWC monitoring with a total live storage capacity of 35.24 BCM.

As of September 2, the total live storage is 20.20 BCM, which is 57 percent of total live storage capacity; last year was 85 percent and the average storage of the last 10 years was 66 percent, CWC data showed.

Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh in the central region have 23 reservoirs with a live storage capacity of 45.27BCM.

Storage available in these reservoirs is 28.06 BCM, which is 62 percent of total live storage capacity; it was 86 percent during last year and average storage of the last 10 years during the corresponding period was 75 percent of the capacity.

The southern region includes Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, AP&TG (2 combined projects in both states), Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu with 37 reservoirs and a total live storage capacity of 52.32 BCM.

As of September 2, available storage was 42.54 BCM, 81 percent of capacity; the corresponding period of last year was 80.5 percent and average storage of last ten years was 64 percent.