New Delhi: Of the 130 large reservoir storages in India monitored by the Central Water Commission (CWC), 19 have storage less than or equal to 50% compared to average of last 10 years, as per CWC data compiled till September 2. There are 27 reservoirs that have storage less than or equal to 50% with respect to last year, according to CWC data.
Most worrisome is the storage position of three major dams: Govind Sagar (Bhakra), Pong dam (Beas) and Sardar Sarovar. While Govind Sagar is 73%, Pong Dam is 58% of the normal storage levels. Sardar Sarovar reservoir has 65 per cent live storage compared to the average of last 10 years.
The overall storage position is less than the corresponding period of last year and is also less than the average storage of last 10 years. 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% of the total live storage capacity. However, last year at same time, it was 140.051 BCM and the average of last 10 years live storage was 119.026 BCM. Thus, the live storage is 80% of the corresponding period of last year and 94% of average of last ten years.
These reservoirs cater to agriculture needs for rabi season and few of them are also used for hydropower generation. Precariously low levels with barely few days of rains due from southwest monsoon can prove problematic in rabi season.
"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% deficit in August rainfall that pushed the total rainfall from June 1 till August 31 to 9% less than normal. "We are banking on rains in 'bhaado' (month of Bhadrapada as per the Hindu calendar), we have 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 total live storage capacity of 19.17 BCM. These reservoirs have 10.36 BCM storage, which is 54% of total live storage capacity of these reservoirs.
As per CWC data, the storage during corresponding period of last year was 76% and average storage of the last 10 years during corresponding period was 81% of live storage capacity of these reservoirs.
The eastern region that includes Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal, Tripura and Nagaland, have 20 reservoirs under CWC monitoring with total live storage capacity of 19.96 BCM. Storage levels in these reservoirs is 10.54 BCM, which is 53% of the total live storage capacity of these reservoirs; last year was 73% and average storage of the last 10 years was 63%.
Western region for Gujarat and Maharashtra has 42 reservoirs under CWC monitoring with a total live storage capacity of 35.24 BCM. As on September 2, the total live storage is 20.20 BCM, which is 57% of total live storage capacity; last year was 85% and average storage of last 10 years was 66%, CWC data showed.
Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh in the central region have 23 reservoirs with live storage capacity of 45.27BCM. Storage available in these reservoirs is 28.06 BCM, which is 62% of total live storage capacity; it was 86% during last year and average storage of the last 10 years during corresponding period was 75% 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 total live storage capacity of 52.32 BCM. As on September 2, available storage was 42.54 BCM, 81% of capacity; corresponding period of last year was 80.5% and average storage of last ten years was 64%.
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