Tamil Nadu, ADB to work on climate adaptation

Amid the Cauvery water row with Karnataka, Tamil Nadu has proposed an ambitious climate adaptation project in Cauvery delta districts with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) at an estimated cost of Rs 1,560 crore.

The scheme, which will be shared by the ADB and the Tamil Nadu government at a 70:30 ratio, has been cleared recently by the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA). “Over the years, there has been no major loan or grant facility available due to the Cauvery dispute with Karnataka. However, the ADB has come forward to assist this project,” a senior official from the water resources organisation wing, attached to the Public Works Department (PWD), told Deccan Herald on Tuesday.

The ADB will provide loan assistance of Rs 1,092 crore ($210 million) while the Tamil Nadu government will spend Rs 498 crore ($90 million) for carrying out various works to improve water facilities in Tanjavur, Tiruvarur and Nagapattinam district.

The official said the work includes rehabilitation and reconstruction of 39 tail end regulators at canal networks, channel widening and embankment up to 120 km along the Cauvery river, development of existing ponds and tanks in delta districts, construction of ground water recharging structures, strengthening Integrated Water Resources Management and agriculture extension work. “Screening committee meeting for clearing the project proposal will be conducted by DEA shortly,” the official said.

Sources in the PWD also said that the state government had already approached the United Nations and the ground water investigations have started with the assistance of UNDP in Cauvery delta areas.

“In addition, rainfall data are being continuously collected from various rain gauge stations throughout the delta districts. Based on the data collected, the maximum and minimum rainfall with percentage deviation are being worked out.

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