Live water storage in reservoirs at the end of monsoon less than 2020

Punjab recorded the highest deficit of 40%

By Shagun
Published: Friday 08 October 2021

The southwest monsoon in India began its withdrawal on October 6, 2021 but water levels in reservoirs in several states are lower than normal, according to data from the Central Water Commission (CWC). 

These include Himachal Pradesh (HP), Punjab, Odisha, Nagaland, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh (MP) and Tamil Nadu (TN). 

Monsoon arrived slightly earlier than usual  in 2021 and after several breaks, ended with heavy rainfall in September. The low storage is despite a late retreat of the southwest monsoon this year. 

Punjab recorded the highest deficit at 40 per cent, followed by HP (28 per cent), Odisha (11 per cent), Nagaland (eight per cent), MP (six per cent), TN (four per cent) and Gujarat (one per cent). 

Stocks were deficient in the Indus and Sabarmati basins and ‘close to normal’ in Narmada and Mahi basins. 

Overall, live storage available as of October 7, 2021 in 130 major reservoirs monitored by CWC, was 138.33 billion cubic metre (BCM), which is 80 per cent of the total live storage capacity of these reservoirs. 

Last year, the live storage available in these reservoirs for the corresponding period was 150.2 BCM.

Andhra Pradesh and Telangana had above-normal storage. Andhra Pradesh had 112 per cent more storage than normal, with one of its reservoirs recording 100 per cent storage. 

Normal storage means average storage of last ten years, close-to-normal storage means where shortfall is up to 20 per cent of normal, deficient storage is where shortfall is 20-60 per cent of normal, highly deficient is where shortfall is more than 60 per cent of normal. 

HP, Punjab, Rajasthan, Odisha, Tripura, Nagaland, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana (two combined projects in both states), Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu had lower storage than last year. 

States with better storage than last year were Jharkhand, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. 

In total, out of 130 reservoirs, 28 were full to their capacity, with 100 per cent storage. 

Region-wise, the northern region had 65 per cent storage compared to their capacity, eastern had 73 per cent, western 81 per cent, central 82.5 per cent and southern 86 per cent. 

The southwest monsoon started withdrawing October 6, 2021, a record 19 days later than the normal date of September 17. 

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