Red Hills lake
Red Hills lake

Storage in Chennai reservoirs inches close to 10,000 mcft

The recent rains brought in by twin cyclones Nivar and Burevi boosted the storage in city reservoirs to nearly 10,000 million cubic feet (mcft), the highest in 10 years. The storage is likely to cross that mark on Monday, also thanks to the Thervoy Kandigai, the fifth lake that was opened last month.


According to data from Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (Metro Water), Poondi, Cholavaram, Red Hills, Chembarambakkam and Thervoy Kandigai have a combined storage of 9,963 Mcft as of Sunday morning. The water managers expect that the storage would cross 10,000 mcft before Monday morning, which would be the first time since 2010.

Even in 2015 and 2017 when the city faced floods, the storage was less than that. The situation this year is such that the water managers were forced to release water from Chembarambakkam, Poondi and Red Hills.

Including the newly created lake, the city’s drinking water storage capacity is 11,757 mcft.

Among the lakes, Chembarambakkam is the biggest and has the highest storage. The lake has 3,223 mcft water as against the full capacity of 3,645 mcft. That is, even after water was released when the rain was strong, it has 89 per cent storage.

Red Hills and Poondi lakes have 2,996 mcft and 2,867 mcft respectively, against their capacity of 3,300 mcft and 3,231 mcft. Cholavaram that has a capacity of 1,081 mcft now has 650 mcft. Thervoy Kandigai lake has 227 mcft as against its full capacity of 500 mcft.

“The present storage is sufficient to supply drinking water to the city throughout the summer of 2021. We are yet to start drawing water from Thervoy Kandigai lake, as the present supply is sufficiently met by the other four lakes,” said a Metro Water official.

City water managers have already increased the daily supply to 830 million liters per day (MLD) from 700 MLD.

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