India Considers 76 River Linking Projects to Fix Water Scarcity

Aug 04, 2014 7:52 am ET

Aug. 4 (Bloomberg) -- India is considering 76 river-linking projects to address water scarcity in some parts of the world’s second-most populous nation, according to the government.

India’s National Water Development Authority has completed reports to connect the Ken and Betwa rivers in north India and the Damanganga and Pinjal in the west, Santosh Kumar Gangwar, junior water minister, said in parliament today.

The authority is working on 30 inter-state and 46 intra- state plans to link rivers and help transfer water to deficit areas, the minister said. India uses 15 percent of the 1.44 billion acre feet (1,776 quadrillion liters) of surface water available in its rivers, according to the authority.

The country seeks to create 150 million acre feet of water storages through linking its rivers to help increase irrigated land areas and improve hydropower capacities. India’s water demand may exceed supply by 50 percent by 2030, according to the government.