India ends August with less water in its reservoirs than 10-year average

Levels below normal in Himachal, Rajasthan, Odisha, Tripura, Nagaland, Gujarat, MP, Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu    

By Shagun
Published: Friday 03 September 2021
End-August water volume in India’s reservoirs lower that 2020

The overall volume of water in India’s major reservoirs from August 26-September 2, 2021 was less than the corresponding period last year and the 10-year average, according to Central Water Commission (CWC).

The live storage of 111.9 billion cubic metres (BCM) was 65 per cent of the capacity of the reservoirs, the CWC noted in its September 2, 2021 bulletin. 

The volume in the last week of August was 140.05 BCM last year and 119.02 over the last 10 years as an average. 

The reservoir levels were below normal in at least 10 of the 19 states monitored. These are Himachal Pradesh (HP), Punjab, Rajasthan, Odisha, Tripura, Nagaland, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu. 

States with water storage less than last year for corresponding period were Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Odisha, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Tripura, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, Nagaland, Gujarat, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu. 

HP and Punjab recorded the highest deficiency. In Gujarat, where many districts are facing drought-like conditions, the majority of the reservoirs have low water storage compared to last year’s levels. 

Sabarmati reservoir, for instance, had 27 per cent storage in August-end this year, much below 93 per cent in the same period last year. Sardar Sarovar, an irrigation reservoir, had 13 per cent storage this time, as against 71 per cent during the same time in 2020. 

In Odisha, where 24 districts are facing drought-like conditions, seven out of 10 reservoirs monitored by CWC have less than 50 per cent storage. 

Only five states had better storage than last year for the corresponding period: Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka and Kerala. 

Stocks are deficient in the basins of the Indus, Narmada, Mahi, Sabarmati rivers and those in Kutch. 

Currently, 27.47 per cent of the country is facing drought-like conditions, according to Drought Early Warning System, a real-time drought monitoring platform. 

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