Pakistan’s Mangla, Tarbela dams, and Chashma Barrage simultaneously reached their peak capacity, a significant feat celebrated on August 17. This achievement, bringing total water storage to 13.443 million acre-feet (MAF), raises expectations for robust crop yields in both the current Kharif and upcoming Rabi seasons.
The Indus River System Authority (IRSA) hailed this synchronized event as historic, emphasizing the role of effective water management and coordination in this success. The Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA), responsible for reservoir operations, viewed this development as promising for Pakistan’s agriculture and hydroelectric power generation.
Read more : Heavy rain fills Tarbela Dam to maximum capacity
Mangla Dam currently holds 7.356 MAF at its highest conservation level of 1,242 feet, while Tarbela’s reservoir contains 5.809 MAF at 1,550 feet, and Chashma holds 0.278 MAF at 649 feet. This joint effort in reservoir filling supports agricultural water needs and addresses inter-seasonal transfers.
Despite challenges posed by climate change and technical limitations, the successful management of water flows was aided by timely rains in upper and lower catchments. This restored water flow in downstream areas of eastern rivers, such as Ravi, Beas, and Sutlej, after years of scarcity, reducing discharges from Mangla Dam and prompting vigilance in communities near old riverbeds.
As Indian reservoirs on the Sutlej and Beas rivers also approach maximum levels, this achievement underscores the interconnected nature of regional water management. The attainment of peak capacity in Pakistan’s major reservoirs holds promise for the country’s agricultural sector and overall economy.