What are the Disadvantages of Multipurpose River Projects?

By Ritika Pant|Updated : November 23rd, 2022

The major disadvantages of multipurpose river projects include affecting the natural flow of water. These projects are water resources undertakings designed for varied purposes like irrigation, hydropower generation, water supply for drinking, etc. Poor sediment flow has an impact on rivers' natural flow. Excessive sedimentation at the reservoir's base led to rockier streambeds and less favourable habitats for river life.

Major Disadvantages of Multipurpose River Project

The project is also known as a multipurpose river valley project. Check out a few of the advantages and disadvantages of multipurpose river projects.



To preserve water and soil resources.

The original flow of water is disturbed by the multipurpose project.

Produce irrigation facilities and force navigation through canals.

It develops heavy sedimentation at the river's bottom, making streambeds harder.

Generate hydroelectric power.

It spoils marine life's habitat.

Drawbacks of the Multipurpose River Projects

  • They result in inadequate aquatic habitats. It is a result of extreme sedimentation at the reservoir's base, which creates rockier stream beds.
  • The vegetation and soil beneath the submerged water slowly decompose, making it difficult for aquatic animals to migrate and reproduce.
  • Multipurpose river projects also have the drawback of interfering with rivers' natural flow, which results in inadequate sediment flow.
  • Movements like the Tehri Dam Andolan, the Narmada Bachao Andolan, etc. were started as a result of the construction of large dams and the beginning of river projects.

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FAQs on Disadvantages of Multipurpose River Projects

  • There are mainly four disadvantages of multipurpose river projects. These result in poor aquatic life habitat impacts the natural flow of water resources, initiate new protests against the environment, and make it difficult for marine fauna to move around in the rivers.

  • Improving irrigation facilities for the flora is the main advantage, whereas harming the life of marine creatures is the primary disadvantage of a multipurpose river project.

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