Progress continues on the collaboration between the AWP and the Government of India, under India’s National Hydrology Project (Phase III). The NHP Phase III aims to strengthen the institutions and quality of water information required for integrated water resources management in India. The project involves all Indian states and union territories, and several central agencies, with a total funding for NHP is US$550m over seven years (2016-2022), of which half is financed by a World Bank loan. AWP funding of AUD$1.15 million has been approved to provide expertise from Australian public and private sector specialists to support the successful implementation of the NHP.
Two major AWP activities have been underway since June and the first is expected to be completed at the end of November. AWP partners CSIRO, Geoscience Australia and the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) are applying their expertise in hydro informatics, web data base management, observation DB systems and Arc GIS to conduct a review of India’s National Water Information System. Together with the Indian Ministry of Water Resources and the Central Water Commission, the AWP team has travelled to India to meet with Indian partners, learn about the system, meet with stakeholders and work to share Australian water resource information system expertise with the Indian Government with the aim of enhancing the performance and effectiveness of institutions and strengthening aspects of water management and governance.
A second Activity underway in India under the NHP Phase III is sharing Australian knowledge, learnings and expertise in River Basin Planning and Management. Together with the Indian Ministry of Water Resources and the Central Water Commission of India, AWP partners Access Water Management, Alluvium and the University of Technology Sydney have been developing a User Guide for River Basin Planning and Implementation for India. To underpin this, they are undertaking a review of India’s national water management and planning policies, and will be conducting consultations and policy dialogue with state and federal agencies in India. As part of the Activity, the AWP also hosted a small delegation of senior officers from the Government of India, on a study tour of key aspects of the Murray Darling Basin. This activity is therefore aimed at building the capacity of individuals and water management organisations in India to adopt effective policies, practices and tools for water resource management.