Pakistan Agriculture News, Water

Provinces face 65 to 70pc water shortage

ISLAMABAD – The water situation has worsened in the country as water storage came down to 0.22 MAF and the water shortage to the provinces at canal head after conveyance losses have reached to 65 to 70 percent.

There is 51 percent shortage is at rim station but at canal head after conveyance losses it would be 65 to 70 percent, said spokesman for Indus River System Authority (Irsa) Khalid Rana in media interaction here.

Tarbela is likely to touch dead level within next 24 hours. He said that river inflows on Sunday were 112900 cusecs while the out flows were 119300 cusecs.

Talking to media after the IRSA’s meeting, he said that currently Punjab and Sindh are receiving 57500 cusecs and 55000 cusecs respectively with -51 percent shortage, while Balochistan is getting 8000 cusecs (shortage 0 percent) and KP 3100 cusecs (shortage 0 percent).

The Irsa spokesman said that Chasma Jhelum canal is closed and on TP the water discharge is 1177 Cusecs. Khalid Rana said that on the same date last year inflows were 375100 cusecs but this year is only 112900 cusecs. Similarly last year storage was 3.6 MAF this year only 0.22 MAF, he added. There is a big gap in storage and inflows as well.

However showing optimism about the water availability within in near future, he said that on Sunday temperature at the catchment area of Skardu was increased by 2,2 degrees from 22.8 to 25 degree Celsius.“With the increase we are hopeful river inflows will increase slightly but it will take about 72 hrs to impact on Tarbela inflows” he maintained.

The Irsa spokesman said that “now exceptional monsoon or exceptional temp in catchments would ensure filling of dams to full capacity otherwise the situation may remain worsened not only in Kharif but also in Rabi season.”

Balochistan has once again protested over the water theft by Sindh province and Balochistan province has lodged strong protest with Irsa regarding water shortages in its canals.

Balochistan province pointed out that shortage in Sindh canals is 63 percent while they are passing shortages of 75 to 80 percent to Balochistan although Irsa is releasing full supplies for the province, said Khalid Rana.

Meanwhile the position of the river inflows and outflows at Tarbela, Mangla and Chashma along with the reservoirs levels released and the barrages Sunday is as under:

Inflows in Rivers Indus at Tarbela were 42200 cusecs and outflows 45000 cusecs, inflows in Kabul at Nowshera were 18100 cusecs and outflows 18100 cusecs, inflows in Jhelum at Mangla were 34300 cusecs and outflows 37900 cusecs while inflow in Chenab at Marala were 18300 cusecs and outflows 8900 cusecs.

Against the minimum operating level of 1386 feet Tarbela present level is 1387.25 feet, the maximum conservation level of the reservoir is 1550 feet.

Mangla against the minimum operating level of 1050 feet is presently 1088.90 feet. The maximum conservation level of Mangla is 1242 feet. Chashma against the minimum operating level of 638.15 feet is presently 638.20 feet. The maximum conservation level is 649 feet.

Fawad Yousafzai, The Nation