Karnataka Stares At Worst Ever Water Scarcity Crisis

Karnataka Stares At Worst Ever Water Scarcity CrisisAlmatti Dam (WRIS/NRSC)

Karnataka is facing major water scarcity in the coming months. The state’s largest reservoir, the Almatti Dam on the Krishna River in Bagalkot district, has hit dead storage – water that cannot be pumped out.

The dead storage limit of the dam is 17.62 thousand million cubic feet (TMC). The water level had dipped to this level on 28 February this year. As of today (11 March), the dam’s live storage capacity – water that can be used – is 0 TMC.

The water inflow into the reservoir is currently 0 cusecs while the outflow of the dam is 1,370 cusecs a day. Drawing water from the dead storage of a dam could damage the structure, although authorities say the dam is strong enough.

The water level shot down to its current level after Karnataka released 2.7 TMC of water to Maharashtra. The government has, however, stopped releasing 10,000 cusecs of water daily.

Almatti is part of the Upper Krishna Irrigation Project. It opened in 2005 and caters to the Bijapur and Bagalkot districts. Seventy cusecs of water is released to supply drinking water.

Officials are considering rationing water as well as imposing strict rules to prevent its wastage.