The Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) has alerted Punjab about possible floods in the coming days in the wake of heavy snowmelt and rains in hills and encroachments along Sutlej and Beas.
Addressing newspersons,the BBMB chairman A B Agrawal said that due to heavy snowfall and rainfall in the catchment areas of Sutlej and Beas rivers, the inflows in Bhakra and Pong reservoirs this year were exceptionally high.
The level of Bhakra reservoir as on Wednesday (July 10) was 1629.87 ft and Pong reservoir 1340.68 ft, which were 84 ft and 48 ft higher in comparison to the year 2012, he said and added that however, the level of Bhakra was higher by 24 ft in comparison to 2011 and that of Pong was 13 ft lower in comparison to 2011.
``Due to heavy rains and snowmelt this year - snowmelt has been highest of the last 23 years - we expect that the water inflow would be much and faster and some controlled spillage of water would have to be restored to’’, he said and added that for this purpose, the senior officers from partner states were meeting every alternate week besides regular meeting for taking the decision for regulated spills.
He said that while routine flood warnings had already been issued, still more warnings in all such cases would be issued in anticipation and deputy commissioners of respective districts would be apprised if some alert was to be declared, besides a regular contact with Indian meteorological department for forecasts for the filling of reservoirs is yet available upto September 20.
Record power generation
However, the heavy inflow notwithstanding, he said that all the available machines at Bhakra and Pong reservoirs were being utilized for maximizing the electricity generation and the BBMB had again surpassed the target set by Central Electricity Authority (CEA) for first quarter of 2013-14 by generating 2,983 million units against CEA’s target of 2,409 million units which is 24% higher and which is a record time high due to high machines availability (97.34%) and better reservoir management, despite depleting manpower.