Water Resources-Institutions and Management

Executive Summary

Vision 2029-Sector papers

Andhra Pradesh Current Status:

Andhra Pradesh Current Status:
Sector Demand Supply Gap
Agriculture 39.66 28.11 11.45
Industrial 0.18 0.16 0.015
Domestic 1.48 0.91 0.57
Total 41.32 29.18 12.03

The Vision 2029 for the water sector of Andhra Pradesh is to provide access to reliable, affordable, sustainable and quality water supply by optimally conserving allocated water resources. It is aimed to fulfill drinking, irrigation, industrial, and environmental needs through efficient utilization of water resources.

Andhra Pradesh is currently the lowest riparian for 12 inter-state rivers, which implies possibility of a deficit monsoon due to delayed and insufficient inflows, and also hazards of floods. The state is mainly dependent on the Krishna and Godavari Rivers.

The total water utilization in the state in 2015 is 29.18 BCM, of which 96 percent is used for irrigation, about 3 percent is used for domestic consumption, and 0.6 percent is utilized by industries.

For Andhra Pradesh to move towards more industrial economy, appropriate water allocations need to be made for each sector due to which improving water use efficiency in the state is a priority area for the GoAP. The target is to increase the water use efficiency in agriculture to 60% by 2029.

An as-in-assessment of the state reveals that it is lacking on some parameters such as efficiency, recycling of wastewater, full coverage of rural and urban areas with drinking water, technology, and demand management, amongst others:

  • Low Water Efficiency and Productivity: Currently, 96% of the water in the state is used for irrigation; domestic drinking water use is about 3.25%, while only 0.6% is utilized by industries. Consistent with the water use patterns of developed nations, the largest growth for demand is expected to be in the industrial sector for the state, which is expected to increase ten times, i.e., from the current 0.17 BCM to 1.78 BCM.

    Water use efficiency in irrigated agriculture is 29% and the water productivity is Rs. 59.10 crores/ TMC and industrial water productivity which is Rs. 17, 870 crores/ TMC. This requires increasing the water efficiency in each sector, and by reallocating water to more productive sectors to meet confronting demands of water.
  • Need for Demand Side Management: AP has set targets of 55 lpcd (litres per capita daily) for rural and 135 lpcd for urban areas. Of the total 48 thousand rural habitations, 17 thousand are fully covered by 55 lpcd, 30 thousand are partially covered, and 593 face problems with quality of water. AP aims to bring down the number of slipped back habitations from 2,582 to 0.

    Coverage of rural and urban population with drinking water remains at 35% and 88% respectively. The sector wise demand supply gap is as follows: 11.45 BCM for agriculture, 0.015 BCM for industries and 0.57 BCM for domestic.
  • Low Recycling and Reuse of Wastewater: Recycling and reusing of waste water stands at only 10%. There is a need to maximize recycling through regulation and enforcement of standards for reuse and disposal of wastes, and developing R & D for low cost, environmentally sound, energy saving techniques of treatment, disposal (especially in coastal regions) with full cost recovery from wastewater and desalinization of seawater.
  • Strengthen Policies and Institutions: There is a need to invest in strengthening policies and governance, and building robust institutions and moving on to actual practice and management of water resources. Since the existing water policy is relevant for the combined state, there needs to be a revision of the water policy is needed to suit the current requirements by passing an umbrella legislation covering issues of backward regions, sustainable groundwater abstraction and regulation.
  • Manage and Mitigate Adverse Effects of Climate Change on Water Resources: A robust infrastructure needs to be built to mitigate the effect of natural calamities such as droughts and floods which can be the result of climate change. Nearly 67% of the mandals in the state are critically drought prone. Necessary arrangements need to be made for drought – proofing. Being a riverine state, AP is prone to floods. There needs to be physical flood protection measures and institutional mechanisms for flood monitoring and management.
  • Need to Upgrade Technology: Existing technology is not in par with global practices and engineering techniques adopted for water conservation, hence there is a need to upgrade existing technology.

    AP needs irrigation reforms since present water use efficiency of irrigation is around 30%. In comparison, developed states like Gujarat and Maharashtra have an irrigation efficiency of 45%. There is a vast scope of adopting efficient irrigation practices such as micro-irrigation like drip – sprinklers, which have on farm irrigation efficiency of 90%, in contrast to 45% water efficiency of the present predominant technique of flood irrigation.

Challenges identified in the sector paper:

Some of the key challenges faced by AP can be broadly classified as dealing with governance, climate change, completion of irrigation projects, and depleting groundwater resources:

  • Reforming Institutions and Capacity: The challenge for institutions lie in reforming existing institutions and creating new institutions which (a) allocate water equitably among competing uses and users (b) integrate management of irrigation at far, system and basin level to reduce upstream-downstream and head tail conflicts (c) integrate the management of groundwater and surface water irrigation (d) address the problems of irrigation development, including use of waste water in environment and health.
  • Climate Change Resilience: Climate change poses a challenge for Andhra Pradesh making it imperative to build climate resilient structures and also undertake non-structural measures such as resilient cropping to tackle the climate change challenges.
  • Irrigation Projects Completion: The major challenges which need to be resolved to achieve the completion of the planned projects are land acquisition, resettlement & rehabilitation, railway crossings, and national and state highway constructions.
  • Depleting Groundwater and Institutional Structure: The groundwater department faces the challenge of being only a monitoring role and presently has no regulatory authority which limits its effectiveness. The key challenges of the water ecosystem in AP can be categorized based on the following factors.


The sector paper delineates the strategic interventions to be adopted in order to achieve the Vision 2029 targets.

  • State government’s initiative in the area of sustainable water management “Neeru-Chettu” programme, which focuses on promoting water conservation, water management and green cover improvement.
  • “20 Non-negotiable” and “Smart Village and Smart Ward” and “NTR Sujala Pathakam” initiatives, aims to provide 100 percent coverage of safe drinking water through piped supply to all households and to eliminate open defecation.
  • One of the 5 proposed grids is the “Water Grid which will have a crucial role in realizing access to safe drinking water for all households by 2019.
  • Other strategic initiatives such as Andhra Pradesh Micro Irrigation Project, Andhra Pradesh Drought Adaptation Initiative, AP Community Based Tank Management Project, and Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater Systems.
  • Enforcement of legislation for regulation of groundwater and implementing quotas for sustainable abstraction in watersheds, water audit, technology up gradation and initiation of best practices.
  • “NTR Sujala Pathakam” is a policy decision taken by the AP Government to address the issue of quality of drinking water associated with water supply and distribution networks, to provide 20 litres of safe drinking water in a can to each household for Rs.2.00. The aim is of reducing the diseases burden arising out of water borne diseases.
  • Other strategic initiatives such as Andhra Pradesh Micro Irrigation Project, Andhra Pradesh Drought Adaptation Initiative, AP Community Based Tank Management Project, and Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater Systems.


Projections for water demand sector wise (BCM)
Sector 2015 2022 2029
Domestic 0.90 1.84 2.01
Industry 0.17 0.6 1.36
Irrigation 28.11 33.24 38.89
Total 29.18 35.68 42.68

Indicator As on 2015 2029
Supply side
Urban Water Supply (BCM) 0.47 1.19
Rural Water Supply (BCM) 0.43 0.82
Industrial Supply (BCM) 0.17 1.78
Maximize storage (BCM) 28.08 31.77
Demand side
Improve Water Use Efficiency in irrigated agriculture 29% 60%
Improve Water Use Efficiency in Industries (Rs. / TMC) 17,870 23,580
Recycle and Reuse of domestic water 10% 80%
Rural Population covered with drinking water 35% 100%
Urban Population covered with drinking water 88% 100%
Water Quality
Habitations protected from geogenic contamination 2% 100%