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Background Material


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Background Material

  1. 1. RELIABLE, TIMELY, QUALITY, CONSISTENT, PUBLIC DATA 1 What is the Hydrology Project? The Hydrology Project has been running since 1995 and has led to a significant change in the availability and reliability of hydro- meteorological data in India. This should mean that in the future water resources development projects (such as hydraulic structure construction, irrigation development through surface water and/or groundwater) will be based on accurate information, and thus designed appropriately and economically. It will also mean that the operation of existing reservoirs, canal systems and the like can be more efficient as there will be better knowledge of the likelihood of future inflows, and the actual operational requirements. Droughts will be more accurately forecast, and drought management measures will be better focused. To date, Hydrology Project Phase I has benefitted mostly nine States (AP, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, MP, Orissa and Tamil Nadu) and 6 central agencies (MoWR, CWC, CGWB, CWPRS, NIH, IMD). Hydrology Project Phase II has supported these Agencies too, but also benefitted Goa, HP, Pondicherry and Punjab as well as the Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) and Central Pollution Control Board. 2 The impact of Hydrology Project The Project has been focused on a number of building blocks to develop a comprehensive Hydrological Information System – HIS. These building blocks are: 2.1 Instrumentation Development of extended observation networks, with improved technology for reliable and accurate measurement – including automation with “real time systems” which send data direct to data processing centres. Real time observation systems includes water level measurement (for river flow information), rainfall data, climate data and water quality data (with CWC and CPCB establishing 13 locations that continuously monitor and directly send data to data centres). On Going States New Map not to scale
  2. 2. RELIABLE, TIMELY, QUALITY, CONSISTENT, PUBLIC DATA 2.2 Data Processing Computer-based systems for reliable and permanent storage of data and detailed data quality control systems to improve accuracy and reliability. This includes establishment of data centres in appropriate locations, with computers and specially trained staff, equipped with extensive guidance manuals and links with central organisations (CWC, CGWB and IMD) for exchange of data and data validation. Development of centralised, web-based data storage systems for added reliability and information security (eGEMS for groundwater data, and eSWIS for surface water data). 2.3 Data Use and Application Development of tools for simpler dissemination of data to users through improved software systems and fully-computerised records. Development of software systems to make use of data easier - such as the hydrological design aids (HDA). Development of a system of Hydrological Data User Groups to improve interaction between data users and the data providers to make sure all requirements are met appropriately.
  3. 3. RELIABLE, TIMELY, QUALITY, CONSISTENT, PUBLIC DATA 2.4 Specific Applications Under HP II there has been further development of systems to use improved data availability for specific applications including: 2.4.1 River Basin Planning Tools Extensive software for data management, catchment modelling and water resources management modelling to fully understand water resources issues within a river basin. The tools included in modelling system are surface water planning, groundwater planning, reservoir operation, irrigation management, drought monitoring and analysis/management, conjunctive use of surface and ground water and water quality. With the support of consultant the framework is ready and has been setup for 13 river basins in nine States. The setup basically includes a dashboard to display, analyse, and allow testing of various scenarios displaying results in both GIS and tabular platforms. Programme management by the National Institute of Hydrology (NIH). 2.4.2 Flood Management and Reservoir Operation Support Tools These tools are used to support operational decisions required at daily or shorter time intervals and have been developed for the first time in India under the project. Such decisions relate to the scheduling of reservoir releases and hydropower turbines, the operation of spillway gates, the issuance of flood warnings, and the deployment of area evacuation measures. The tools comprise data management, catchment modelling and water resources operation modelling to provide up- to-the-minute monitoring of water resources / flood information, together with forecasting the likely future situation for expected operational actions. This allows evaluation of the effect of changing operational decisions to improve management of floods (such as system developed for Maharashtra) or management of reservoirs for maximising operational efficiency (such as system for BBMB). 2.4.3 Purpose-driven Studies Over 40 studies have been undertaken across the HP II agencies by the agencies themselves (supported by external consultancies or universities where needed) to showcase the use of improved hydrological data to improve understanding of water management issues, and provide advice for resolution of these issues. These studies have included groundwater management, water quality issues, reservoir sedimentation problems and improved water management to address crop water needs. Many of the studies have benefitted from the involvement of NIH specialists.
  4. 4. RELIABLE, TIMELY, QUALITY, CONSISTENT, PUBLIC DATA 2.4.4 Aquifer Management Pilot Study The CGWB has undertaken a comprehensive pilot study in six environments in India to better understand how to quantify groundwater resources and facilitate local management of groundwater through appropriate local knowledge and guidance. This research and development work is required for efficient implementation of the programme of work needed under the 12th five year plan to develop local aquifer management plans throughout India. 3 Beyond the Hydrology Project The revised National Water Policy 2012 stresses the need for a national level information system for water resources planning and management by (i) creating a modern water information system with free exchange of data and by (ii) upgrading the country’s technological ability to collect, process and disseminate hydrological and environmental data. While great steps have been taken under the Hydrology Project towards these goals, there is still a significant way to go to make sure there is sufficient good quality data for the management of India’s water resources. There are experience and knowledge to be gained from the rest of the world, and the further development of networks and data quality improvement programmes to improve the information available to planners and managers of water resources. The value of good data on water resources for optimising water resources management within the country is so great that the importance of such further work is hard to over-emphasise.