NEW DELHI: In this year of deficient rainfall, less than two-thirds of the country's major reservoir-storage capacity of water is currently available -- some 85 percent of the available storage in the corresponding period of last year, the water resources ministry said Friday.
"The Water storage available in 85 important reservoirs of the country as on Aug 21, 2014 was 101.253 BCM (billion cubic metres)" the ministry said in a statement here.
"The present storage position during the current year is less than the storage position of last year but better than the average storage of the last ten years," it added.
The total storage capacity of 37 of these storages, which are hydropower reservoirs, is 155.046 BCM which is about 61 percent of storage capacity of 253.388 BCM created in the country, the statement said.
According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), India’s per capita water storage capacity is 200 cubic metres, well below the world average of 900 cubic metres per capita.
Estimates suggest that around 65 percent of India’s rainwater flows out to sea uncaptured. Eighty percent of India's land mass has an annual rainfall of 750mm or more.
Of the reservoirs in five regions monitored by the Central Water Commission on a weekly basis, only the eastern region, that includes the states of Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal and Tripura, had better storage during current year than the corresponding period of last year.