CHENNAI: As the storage levels in reservoirs have started to come down, the Water Resources Department (WRD) has formulated strategies to acquire its quota of water pending from the Andhra Pradesh government. In addition, the department is searching for water bodies that can be transformed into reservoirs to augment storage capacity.
As per WRD data accessed by TNIE, the water storage in city reservoirs stood at 9.473 TMCft (out of total capacity of 13.222 TMCft) on Saturday. The storage level has come below 10 TMCft after a gap of three months.
In the current spell ending March, Tamil Nadu received 3.711 of 8 TMCft of Krishna water from the AP government, because some internal repair works were initiated in their reservoirs. However, the state plans to get the pending water as early as possible to fill the storage gap, the official added.
Another official said that as per the study, 90% of rainwater drains into the sea. According to the old map, there were nearly 3,500 tanks in Chennai, Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu districts. But, WRD maintains only a few tanks. The official added that it is possible to store rainwater if the missing tanks are identified and restored.
The city’s annual drinking water requirement is 20 TMCft, which may go up to 25 TMCft in three to four years. The recent Tiruppugazh committee also suggested the government increase the water storage capacity considering future needs.
WRD has submitted a set of proposals to the state government, including expansion of Poondi reservoir from 3.2 to 5.2 TMCft and converting small lakes to drinking water reservoirs.
Works are underway on building a small reservoir by upgrading Kattur and Thatmanji tanks to increase their combined capacity from 58.27 mcft to 350 mcft. Besides, the department has started works in Chengalpattu Kolavoy lake to convert it into a drinking water source, the official added.
The department is currently discharging nearly 1,000 cusecs of water from the six reservoirs for the city’s drinking water requirements.