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FMIS Background

Recurring floods in Ganga,Yamuna, Ramganga, Gomti, Sharda, Ghagra, Rapti and Gandak rivers in Uttar Pradesh State annually affect about 2.7 million hectares, more than 21.1 million people and cause damages of INR 4.3 billions. More than 30 percent of the total geographical area is flood-prone in 23 districts12 in the eastern, western and central regions of Uttar Pradesh State. Recurrent floods are devastating to the State economy and undermine poverty alleviation efforts. Floods not only affect lives, livelihoods, and productivity and security of existing investments, but are also a disincentive for additional investments.

Traditional efforts at flood management in the State have focused on hardware systems, mainly consisting of 2162 km. of marginal embankments, 13,825 km. drains, and 66 town protection works till 2008-09, providing protection to about 1.95 million ha at a total cost of INR 21 billions. These flood control structures are constructed to then-prevailing standards and technology, and not well maintained.

Despite the largely structural solutions that have been the focus of flood management in the past decades, the threat of floods remains as high as ever to the economy and livelihoods in UP. The approach here would be developed in the context of a long-term flood management strategy based on analysis and stakeholder inputs and that builds upon the wisdom of the substantial experience and documentation that currently exists on the information, institutions, and investments required. The paradigm shift from flood control to management underlines the need to balance the historical emphasis on hardware investments such as embankments with software solutions such as improved flood forecasting and warning systems. In this regard, Uttar Pradesh State can draw upon recent global advances in satellite-based climate and flood forecasting.

FMIS Introduction

The eastern region of the State is one of the worst affected area and floods occur almost every year from the Ghagra, Rapti, and Gandak Rivers and their tributaries. The Rapti river and its tributaries (Burhi Rapti, Banganga, Kunhra-Ghonghi, Jamuwar, Tilar, Rohini, Mohaw, Chandan, Ami and Gurra) are highly flood-prone, with recurring floods causing huge loss of crops, property, human and cattle life. The floods in 1973 affected more than 9060 villages, and more than 1.8 million ha in the basin. The severity of flood hazard has lead to construction of maximum number of marginal embankments in the Rapti basin. Though the river system is extensively jacketed, flood inundation continues to be experienced, calling for a holistic approach of structural and non-structural interventions in the basin. Maps in Website shows inundation extent during recent floods, mapped from satellite imagery.

A specialized flood management information system (FMIS) will be developed to produce operational information products to support UPID (which is responsible for the construction and maintenance of all structural and non-structural interventions for flood mitigation) and other disaster management agencies in the state. Extensive use of modern technology (e.g. satellite remote sensing, GIS, mobile-based applications for early warning dissemination) would help support short-term disaster response and long-term early warning and flood management goals. Information will be disseminated through institutional linkages and a range of public media including bulletins, a UPID and/or FMIS flood website, and community outreach programmes.

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