A ₹22,004-crore proposal for Chennai City Water Supply Augmentation and Flood Mitigation Resilience to Climate Change programme is under initial examination by the Tamil Nadu government, says the Policy Note of Water Resources Department.
It is very imperative to protect Chennai from recurrent flooding and drinking water problems. Medium-term and long-term flood mitigation works are proposed to be taken up to avoid recurring flooding in Chennai.
Currently, six reservoirs - Cholavaram, Chembarambakkam, Poondi, Redhills, Kannankottai-Thervaikandigai and Veeranam - with a combined capacity of 13 TMC ft caters to the needs of drinking water requirements of Chennai against the annual demand of drinking and industrial requirement about 22 TMC ft. This may rise to 32 TMC ft by 2035 with the projected population growth.
The impact of climate change has been rampant on tropical climatic areas causing unprecedented flash floods in many parts of Chennai, Kancheepuram, Chengalpattu and Thiruvallur districts. Hence, to bridge the gap between the current water demand and supply rate, and also create a flood-resilient urban infrastructure, the project “Chennai City Water Supply Augmentation and Flood Mitigation Resilient to Climate Change” is being formulated, the policy tabled by Minister for Water Resources, Durai Murugan, in the Legislative Assembly recently.
The objective of the proposal is flood mitigation and rainwater conservation for deficit years in and around Chennai. The comprehensive proposal comprises enhancing the rain water storage capacity in the upstream of Chennai by creation of new storage structures, increasing the storage capacity of existing water bodies, improving the conveyance efficiency and inter-connecting the feasible water bodies.
The proposal aims to create an additional storage capacity of 20.50 TMC ft to meet the drinking water requirements of Chennai and find possible mitigation measures to a maximum extent for the flood-vulnerable areas in and around Chennai. The tentative estimated cost is ₹22,004 crore, the policy said.
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