The torrential rains in the Malnad region since the onset of monsoon this year have brought cheer to the State power sector. The storage in the three major hydel power generation reservoirs is likely to fill to the brim by third week of August if their catchment areas continue to receive rains.
The present combined live storage of water in Linganamakki reservoir — the source of water for Sharavathi hydel power project; Supa reservoir — source for the Kalinadi hydro electric project; and Mani reservoir that provides water for Varahi hydroelectric project, is at 230 tmcft against the combined maximum live storage capacity of 327 tmcft.In the corresponding day last year, the combined live storage in the three reservoirs had stood at just 133 tmcft.
If the water level in the three reservoirs reach full capacity, it is possible to generate 8,689 million units of power. As the State relies on hydel power projects to maintain peak-hour demand for power as well as load management especially during summer, respite from power outages during summer in 2019 can be expected.
The present combined power generation capacity of the three reservoirs is at 6,192 million units — 3,387 million units from Sharavathi project, 2,169 million units from Kalinadi project, and 636 million units from Varahi project. According to sources in Karnataka Power Corporation Ltd.(KPCL), with the present level of storage in the three reservoirs, it is possible to generate 18.38 million units of power a day, up to June 30 next year.
At the same time, Shivamogga district that forms the catchment area of Linganamakki and Mani reservoirs; and Uttara Kannada district that forms the catchment area of Supa reservoir, have received heavy rains this year in June and July resulting in substantial enhancement in water levels.
Usually, the southwest monsoon enters Malnad region by the first week of June and becomes active only from second or third week of July. But this year, the catchment areas of the reservoirs got good rains in June and July.
The combined live storage in the three reservoirs has increased by 29 tmcft in June and by 126 tmcft in July. These reservoirs have witnessed heavy inflow of water during second and third week of July owing to heavy rain that lashed their catchment areas.
Normally, August is characterised by heavy rains in Malnad region. According to sources in KPCL, if the southwest monsoon maintains its momentum, the water level in the three reservoirs is likely to fill to the brim by third week of August.