Water levels in southern state reservoirs dip

Govt gears up for power crisis

Water levels in southern state reservoirs dip
As the sweltering heatwave sweeps the country, water levels in reservoirs in the southern states are fast depleting.

Of the 31 major reservoirs in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, the water available is just 253.55 tmcft, which is 14% of the total live storage capacity as on March 31, against the capacity of 1,821.88 tmcft.

The storage of the corresponding period last year was 17% of the total live storage capacity.

The average storage of the past 10 years during the corresponding period was 27% of the live storage capacity of these reservoirs.

“Thus, the storage in the current year is less than the same period last year and is also less than the average storage of the last 10 years during the corresponding period,” said a report from the Central Water Commission. Though water storage is depleting fast in north Indian states too, live storage is better than the last year, except in Himachal Pradesh, it said.

The water storage in 91 major reservoirs of the country as on March 30, 2017, was 1,858.61 tmcft, against a total of 5,572.30 tmcft storage capacity.

This was 133% of the storage of the corresponding period last year and 102% of the average storage of the past 10 years.

As the Indian Meteorological Department had earlier forecast that temperatures would be above normal between March and May, the power ministry is gearing up to meet the challenges. The IMD said the temperature during the last week of March was 4-6 degrees Celsius above normal, intensifying heatwave conditions in many areas.

The power demand in the northern region would peak to the extent of 56 GW during the April-September period. The demand in the southern region has already peaked to 42 GW, while it has touched 50 GW in the west. The all India peak demand during the summer is expected to be 165 GW.

To address the rising demand for power, the ministry has instructed the states to ensure the transmission network is ready and capable.

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