Due to erratic spread of monsoon across Maharashtra, water levels in 103 major dams is making the State government anxious. The usable or live water storage level in the dams on Monday had reached only 12.7 per cent, compared with 27.38 per cent on the same day last year.
In a large dam, water is classified as live storage and designed live storage. Live storage is the one, which can used be easily for drinking and irrigation. Designed live storage, refers to storage capacity.
Today the dams are holding 3,713.77 million cusecs of live storage, while the gross live storage capacity is 8,584.02 million cusecs.
When water levels falls below designed live storage, it cannot be drained through gravity to the canals. Such a low level is called dead storage. Tapping into dead storage is only done in dire emergencies. Currently the dams hold 6462.13 million cusecs of dead storage.
Out of the six revenue divisions of Maharashtra, the dams in drought prone Aurangabad are worst affected. The percentage of live water storage has reached abysmally low 0.28 per cent, which was 15.38 per cent, last year. The live water storage in Aurangabad is just 12.49 million cusecs, while the gross storage is 987.26 million cusecs. A senior official in Maharashtra government told BusinessLine that water situation in the Aurangabad region, especially for industries is getting worse. Using tanker water is putting a huge drain on the balance sheet. It could lead to temporary closure of some units, the official said.
Aurangabad is a large engineering and automobile hub. It is also a established centre for brewery industry and some of the biggest brands in beer are located around Aurabgabad city.
The official pointed that this year even Konkan divisions, which always receives excess rainfall year after year is lagging. The percentage of live water storage has reached 30.67 per cent per cent, which was 52.26 per cent, last year.