Mangla Dam becomes largest water reservoir of Pakistan
26 August, 2013
LAHORE: The Mangla Dam has become the "largest water reservoir in Pakistan", as its water storage capacity increased to 6.65 million acre feet (MAF) on Sunday. This surpassed the 6.58 MAF benchmark, which was the maximum live storage capacity of the Tarbela Dam, which previously held this title.
According to authorities, upon the successful completion of the Mangla Dam Raising Project, it has become the largest water storage facility in the country. With the increase in dam's height by 30 feet, now water could be stored in the reservoir up to 1,242 feet against the previous level of 1,202 feet. Resultantly, the live storage capacity of the raised Mangla Dam has now increased to 7.39 MAF from 4.51 MAF.
Given the current weather forecast, the prospects for filling of the Mangla reservoir to the maximum conservation level are bright. If the raised Mangla Dam were filled to its maximum conservation level of 1,242 feet, 2.88 MAF of additional water would be available for agriculture and the generation of low-cost hydroelectricity in the country.
It is pertinent to mention that water in the Mangla Lake crossed 1232.5 feet, on Sunday meaning, 2.14 MAF additional water was available in the reservoir. In addition to managing the current floods, benefits worth billions of rupees in agriculture and power sector would also be accrued through utilisation of this additional water.
Filling of additional water in the raised Mangla Dam this year reflects the federal government's resolve for the conservation and optimal utilisation of the precious yet scarce water resource for the agro-based economy of the country, a source said. Last month, it was mutually decided by all the stakeholders to fill the raised Mangla Dam this year up to its maximum level, as the federal government had promised to pay off the financial liabilities of those that had been affected by the project.