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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

September wet spell: Dams, barring Sardar Sarovar filled to brim

As continuing rainfall in the upper catchment areas of Madhya Pradesh has ensured an inflow of 1.45 lakh cusec water, the Ukai dam authorities have started discharging over 1.35 lakh cusecs of water Monday.

Written by Aditi Raja , Ritu Sharma | Ahmedabad |
October 5, 2021 12:10:35 am
Gujarat recorded 95 per cent rainfall until Monday with rainfall in September higher than the combined total of June, July and August. (ANI/File Photo)

With Gujarat receiving its highest share of rainfall so far this year in September, all major dams, barring Narmada’s Sardar Sarovar, are at their maximum capacities. According to data shared by Gujarat’s Narmada and Water Resources, Water Supply (NWRWS) and Kalpsar Department, of the total designed storage capacity of 25,244 million cubic metres (MCM) across 207 dams, the state has so far recorded 79.47 per cent storage at 20,062.74 MCM, with South Gujarat recording the highest at 97.63 per cent.

As continuing rainfall in the upper catchment areas of Madhya Pradesh has ensured an inflow of 1.45 lakh cusec water, the Ukai dam authorities have started discharging over 1.35 lakh cusecs of water Monday.

The water level in Valsad’s Madhuban dam has touched 79.90 m, short of its danger level of 82.40 m. The inflow of water into the dam is at 6,577 cusecs, while outflow has been maintained at 6,599 cusecs.

Gujarat recorded 95 per cent rainfall until Monday with rainfall in September higher than the combined total of June, July and August. Since the onset of southwest monsoon on June 11, the state has recorded 794 mm rain of which 426 mm was recorded in September. June recorded 120 mm rainfall, while July and August saw 177 mm and 65 mm respectively.

Among the regions, Saurashtra and Kutch received more than 100 per cent rainfall. With 796 mm rainfall, Saurashtra received the highest at 113 per cent, followed by Kutch (494 mm) at 112 percent till October 4.

As of Monday, reservoirs in North Gujarat were filled up to 36.10 per cent, while those in Central Gujarat were 88.79 per cent filled. South Gujarat has recorded a total of 97.63 per cent storage so far. Kutch recorded 36.90 per cent storage, while Saurashtra was at 89.21 per cent.

Compared to the storage data as of October 4, 2020, North Gujarat, which had 1,577.75 MCM storage last year, has recorded a shortfall of 881.23 MCM with a gross storage of 696.52 CM this year. Similarly, Central Gujarat, which had gross storage of 2,233.23 MCM same time last year, has recorded only 2,084 MCM storage until Monday, while South Gujarat, which had 8,624.78 MCM, has recorded 8,420.26 MCM so far this year.

Kutch, with a gross storage of 296.92 MCM on the same day last year, currently has 122.60 MCM storage, while Saurashtra has 2,275.52 MCM gross storage against 2,432.51 MCM last year. Similarly, the storage in Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP) has taken a dent with the current storage of 6,463.67 MCM as against 8,326.50 MCM last year– a shortfall of 1,862 MCM.

In North Gujarat, Banaskantha has recorded the lowest storage in its reservoirs with a total of 11.23 per cent gross storage, of which 9.74 per cent is live storage. Chhota Udepur in Central Gujarat and Navsari in South Gujarat have recorded 100 per cent gross and live storage. Valsad in South Gujarat has also recorded 99.91 per cent gross storage of which 99.90 per cent is live storage.

Kutch has recorded 36.90 per cent gross and 30.32 per cent live storage, while Saurashtra, which witnessed floods in many parts of the 11 districts has recorded live storage of 89.02 per cent of the gross storage of 89.21 per cent.

Of the 42 major dams across the state–excluding Sardar Sarovar– those that have recorded a 100 per cent current storage include Sukhi in Chhota Udepur, Shetrunji in Bhavnagar, Und-I in Jamnagar and Machchhu-II in Morbi. Other dams that are on high alert and are inching towards full storage capacity include Kadana in Mahisagar (99.84 per cent), Machchhu-I in Morbi (99.65 per cent), Damanganga in Valsad (99.91 per cent), Bhadar in Rajkot (99.82 per cent), Ukai in Tapi (97.74 per cent) and Karjan in Narmada (96.42 per cent).

Forty-two dams have recorded a total of 11,407 MCM storage so far of the designed capacity of 12,938 MCM. Other smaller dams across the state have recorded storage of 2,192 MCM against the total capacity of 2,846 MCM.

The deficit in rainfall in the rain gauge stations of SSP in Madhya Pradesh throughout the monsoon season has caused the deficit in the storage in the basin. Of the gross storage capacity of 25,244 MCM across major dams in Gujarat, the SSP basin alone accounts for 9,460 MCM with live storage of 5,760 MCM.

However, officials are confident that SSP will be in a “comfortable position” to meet the drinking water supply needs for the summer of next year. The dam, known as the lifeline of Gujarat, has recorded total gross storage of 68.33 per cent of which only 47.98 per cent is live storage as of October 4. Currently, SSP has 6,463.67 MCM gross storage of which only 2,763 MCM is the live storage. The dam stands at 127.90 m.

“The major dams in the state being almost full will help manage the water supply. That said, the Narmada dam is the largest due to its sheer capacity. All major dams across the state do not have enough capacity to last for the entire year, especially during the summer season. This year, a good monsoon in Saurashtra has helped us cut back the release from the dam during this time in order to be able to fill up the reservoir,” said an official of the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd.

According to the data by NWRWS and Kalpsar, of the other 206 gated and ungated reservoir schemes in the state, 124 reservoirs are on high alert, crossing their respective 90 per cent filling capacity.

(With inputs from Kamaal Saiyed in Surat)

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