Canal System of Pakistan

by on January 31, 2010
in Hydropower

Thal_Canal of Pakistan

Irrigation is the man-made supply of water to the land to encourage vegetation. It is a substitute for inadequate or erratic rainfall and is extremely essential for arid regions where there are no rivers and also in humid regions to improve crop output. In Pakistan, 75% of the agricultural land is under irrigation. Three major water sources in Pakistan are rain water, ground water and rivers.

Irrigation system is not something new. Since olden days, people had devised various methods to water their fields. Some traditional methods of irrigation are Persian Wheel, Charsa and Shaduf. Karez is another traditional irrigation system practiced in Baluchistan only. Karez is a horizontal canal located mainly on the foot hills and it brings the under ground water to the surface. Modern advancements in the irrigation system are the perennial canals and tube wells.
Pakistan is basically a dry country with the River Indus and its tributaries being the main source of water supply. Dams both large and small and barrages have been built on the Indus and its tributaries. Large dams such as Tarbela Dam and Mangla Dam are multipurpose plans which not only store water, irrigate lands but also generate hydro electricity. Small dams like Khanpur Dam, Rawal Dam and Hub Dam supply water for agriculture, industrial and domestic purpose and act as a reservoir as well. A hilly terrain is required to build a dam. Barrages on the other hand are built on flat places they also supply water for irrigation purpose and industrial and domestic use. Some barrages are Sukkur Barrage, Guddu Barrage, Kotri Barrage, and Chashma Barrage.

Canals are taken out from rivers, dams and barrages. Pakistan has one of the largest canal irrigation systems in the world. The Inundation canals are taken from rivers and they receive water only when the water level in the rivers is high such as during floods. The perennial canals are taken from dams and barrages and supply water to the fields through out the year. In Pakistan there are 3 large dams, 85 small dams, 19 barrages, 12 inter link canals, 45 canals and 0.7 million tube wells to meet the commercial, domestic and irrigational needs of the country.

Travel Pakistan – Rawal Dam and Khanpur Dam

by on August 22, 2009
in Travel Pakistan

Khanpur_Dam Pakistan

The beautiful Rawal Dam & the Rawal Lake

The Rawal Dam is situated near Islamabad, Pakistan. It is a multipurpose dam as it supplies drinking water to Islamabad and Rawalpindi and irrigated the land as well. The reservoir of this dam is called Rawal Lake which is famous for its beauty and greenery. Many families come to spend time at this lake as it is one of the most beautiful artificial lakes in the area. The lake is situated in the Margalla Hills National Park.

The Rawal dam is a partly arched gravity dam which is an excellent example of stone masonry. The crest level of the dam is 531 m and the maximum height of the crest is around 40 m. two canals are derived from the dam i.e. Left Bank Canal and the Right Bank Canal. These canals run through the Punjab and irrigate a major area.

Many people come here for fishing in the fishing season. The daily fishing fee is only Rs 10 and it is very economical and every one can afford it. For this reason there are many families that plan their picnics at the Rawal Dam Lake.

Khanpur Dam – utility and the festivity

Khanpur dam one of the most beautiful dams is constructed over River Haro which originates from Abottabad. It is situated near Khanpur town NWFP around 40 km from the federal capital Islamabad The construction of this multipurpose mega project began in 1968 and was completed in 1983 with an estimated cost of Rs 1,352 million.. Khanpur dam has a storage capacity of 106,000acre of water and is 67 feet high. Khanpur dam is of utmost importance as it is the primary source of water supply (both domestic and industrial) to Islamabad and Rawalpindi the twin city. It also irrigates the surrounding agricultural areas.

Known for its picturesque beauty, Khanpur Lake (the reservoir of the dam) has become a popular tourist destination and a picnic spot. The beautiful and serene environment is also a sanctuary for migratory birds during winter. The beautiful lush green gardens carved in the slopes of the mountains surrounding the lake attract a large number of visitors and various activities like boating, angling rock climbing and bird watching have made it all the more alluring.

The Khanpur dam took 15 years before it became functional in 1983. The estimated cost on the dam is around Rs 1352 billion. The dam stores 110,000 acre feet of water and the height of the dam is 167 feet or 51 meter.

Every year a spring carnival is arranged at the Khanpur dam. This carnival attracts many tourists from Pakistan and from around the world and it has many colorful and attractive events to show off.