Water Cut In Mumbai Again? Lake Level Drops Below 50%

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The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) may decrease water supply or announce a water cut in Mumbai by the end of February 2024, as the water stock dipped to 49.37 percent in the seven lakes that supply water to the city. The water levels have dropped to the lowest in the past three years.

The water cut was scheduled by the city government after the meteorological department warned of a severe summer this year.

On February 13, the lake levels were 54.89% of their level from the previous year, even though the water stock had dropped to half of its maximum capacity. The stock had stayed at 57.39 percent in 2022.

A civic official said, “In the lake’s catchment area, good rains are predicted for September and October. Regrettably, there was far less rainfall during this time last year. If the lakes have a combined water stock of 14.47 lakh ML on October 1, then the city could have an adequate supply of water. However, the shortfall persisted despite less rainfall. Thus, we shall ask the irrigation department to increase the amount of water from Upper Vaitarna Lake and Bhatsa Lake that is available for drinking.”

In June of last year, the BMC was granted permission to utilise an extra 1.5 lakh ML of water from the reserves. “If our request is not accepted by the irrigation department, we might have to impose water cuts after some time,” stated P. Velrasu, Additional Municipal Commissioner (Projects). Due to the monsoon’s tardiness in arriving this year, the civic authority was compelled to implement a 10% water cut on July 1. The lakes were partially filled by July’s heavy rains, and on August 9, the incision was withdrawn.

In an effort to lower air pollution in the city by creating artificial rain, the BMC asked for expressions of interest in performing cloud seeding. But because the civic organisation did not receive a response from seasoned enterprises, the plans have been shelved for the time being. The BMC supplies 3,900 ML of water to the city each day. Modak Sagar, Tansa, Bhatsa, Upper Vaitarna, Middle Vaitarna, Tulsi, and Vihar lakes all have their water removed.