Karnataka State in South India is water stressed with increasing inter-sectoral demand on water. Krishna and Cauvery are two major river basins that flow through the State. The water resources of the State are limited with approximately 1,072 m3/person/year. The water demand is projected to rise by 40 per cent from 37,419 million m3 in 2000 to 52,366 million m3 by 2025. It is also estimated that due to competing demands, there will be a decline in the share of total demand for water from agriculture sector-from 84 per cent in 2000 to 73 per cent by 2025. Meeting the anticipated rise in competing demands is a major challenge which if unmet, may constrain sustainable economic growth.
Water stress in the State is exacerbated by uneven spatial and temporal distribution of water resources and the predicted impacts of climate change.Documented evidence indicates that poor coordination between various water user groups (like industry,domestic and power generation) has been contributing to sub-optimal management of the already limited water resources. Adopting an Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) approach that promotes coordinated development and management of water, land and related resources will improve equitable economic and social welfare, while ensuring sustainability of the environment. Towards achieving the above objective Project Preparatory Technical Assistance (PPTA) was approved by Asian Development Bank (ADB) in December 2011 to support the Water Resources Department (WRD), State Government of Karnataka to formulate the Karnataka Integrated and Sustainable Water Resources Management Investment Program (KISWRMIP). A loan of $150 million was approved by ADB while GoK shall provide $75 million counterpart financing. The total cost of the program is $225 million.