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Water resources

Author:  V.S. Molotov
Source:  After the materials of the article: Molotov V.S. State Management of the Natural Resources of the Baikal Region / V.S. Molotov, K. Sh. Shagzhiyev; ed. by V.P. Orlov, N.G. Rybalsky. Moscow, NIA-Priroda Publishers, 1999. 244 p. [Ch. 2.4. Water Resources and Waterworks]. pp. 53-77.

1. Surface waters
2. Subterranean waters
3. Water resources usage

The Baikal region is rich in water resources. Lake Baikal uniqueness and its exceptional clearness of natural water are influenced by the water resource of its basin which replenish the lake waters.
The credit part of the Baikal water balance is 71.16 cub. km including 13% of precipitation, 82.5% are river waters income, 3.2% are subterranean waters income and 1.3% are condensation. The debit part makes up 70.72 cub. km (the outflow from the lake is 6,039 cub. km), 10.33 cub. km are evaporation.
Within the Baikal region there are 31,359 rivers with the total length of 116,417 km and about 18,469 lakes with the total area of 1,292 sq. km.
Being natural formations all the water objects have their own individual peculiarities of development. An example of it is Lake Baikal having low mineralized water (96.4 mg/l) where the clearness of the water mass reaches 40 m. The lake possesses unique flora and fauna.



The watershed of Lake Baikal is 588,092 sq. km. 45% of them are in the Russian Federation and the rest is in Mongolia. The biggest tributaries of the lake (70% of the inflow) are the Selenga (60% of the watershed), the Barguzin and the Upper Angara.
The Baikal region has equally spread and developed hydrographic system. The river system is less developed in the lower part of the Dzhida and the Chikoi basins.
Small rivers are one of the essential elements of geographic environment and play an important role in the characteristic of the regions hydrosphere. Rivers less than 100 km long make up about 99% of the general number of the Baikal region rivers and more than 80% of its general length. If we take the rivers less than 10 km long, their total length will make 60% of the total length of all the region rivers.
The Baikal basin rivers can be divided into 4 groups:
1) The rivers with rain inflow strongly pronounced prevalence (70-80% of the year), they are the Dzhida and the Chikoi basins;
2) The rivers with rain inflow prevalence (60-70%);
3) The rivers with equal inflow of rain and thawing water;
4) The rivers with thawing waters prevalence (50-60%).
The second group consists of the tributaries of the Baikal southern part and the rivers of the Khilok basin and the Uda upper reaches, the third group includes the rivers of the lower Selenga, Uda and Barguzin rivers, the fourth group comprises the rivers of the northernmost part of Lake Baikal and the Upper Angara basin.
The sources of most lakes are on the slopes of mountain ranges at the heights of 1,200-1,400 m. Thats why in the upper reaches, and for many rivers along their  whole length, they are of mountainous character.
Within the Baikal region there are 18,469 lakes with the total area of 1,292 sq. km which makes up 0.53% of the whole basin surface. Small lakes with the area of less than 1 sq. km prevail and only 15 lakes have the area of more than 5 sq. km. The percentage of the lakes in the basin decreases from the north to the south, from 0.8-1.2% to less than 0.1%.
The main rivers flowing into Lake Baikal are the Selenga, the Barguzin, the Upper Angara, the Bolshaya, the Kabanya, the Tompuda, the Tyya, the Goloustnaya, the Vydrennaya, the Snezhnaya and others.
About 53% of the river waters form on the territory of Buryatia, 27% on the territory of Mongolia, 16% on the territory of the Chita region and 4% on the territory of the Irkutsk region.
The Selenga is the biggest tributary, it brings at an average about 30 cub. km of water into the lake every year. It gets its name after the confluence of the Muren and the Ider rivers; its source is considered to be the more full-flowing and long Ider. The river flows eastwards and north-eastwards across the territory of Mongolia and after passing the border of Russia and Mongolia it turns northwards and flows into Lake Baikal where it forms a big delta with the total area of 546 sq. km. The river is 1,024 km long. The watershed area is 447,060 sq. km.
The Upper Angara flows down from the southern slope of the Delyun-Uran mountain range and flows into the Angarsky sor (cove) situated in the northern part of the Baikal. There the river forms a great delta with numerous channels, branches and lakes in the former river-beds. The river is 438 km long, the watershed area is 21,400 km.
The Barguzin springs from the joint of the South-Muisky and Ikat mountain ranges and flows into the Barguzin gulf of Lake Baikal. The hydrographic system is well developed in the basin. There are 2,544 rivers with the total length of about 10,750 km. Most rivers (92%) are less than 10 km long. In many places there are outlets of thermal mineral waters.
By the character of water condition the Baikal region rivers can be referred to the type of rivers with floods. The main part of the inflow passes in the warm season of the year. In the warm season the rivers have unstable water conditions. In the cold season the rivers feed on subterranean waters exclusively.
Floods on big and medium rivers are 60-100 days long at the average and on the small rivers flowing in the forest-steppe zone they are not longer than 15-20 days.
Hydrochemical composition of the surface waters of the Baikal basin belongs to the first type of hydrocarbon-calcium waters with low mineralization (up to 150 mg/l).
By the mineralization degree the Baikal tributary waters can be divided into 5 groups:
1) The tributaries with very low water mineralization are situated chiefly at the southern and northern end of the Baikal and have small watershed basins in the formation of which weakly lixivated crystalline rocks take part. The watershed inclination in the basins of these rivers are very significant in most cases. The rivers feeding is mostly surface, principally from snow. In winter they usually freeze all over or have extremely insignificant water expenditure. Mineralization (by the total number of ions) in the waters of the mentioned group does not exceed 50 mg/l, in summer it is often lower (20-40 mg/l).
2) Tributaries with water mineralization of 50-100 mg/l numerous mountain rivers collecting their waters in immediate proximity to the Baikal and adjacent mountain ranges. This group includes also the Upper Angara and the Turka the watersheds of which go beyond the lake coastal ranges.
3) The tributaries with water mineralization from 100 to 200 mg/l the Selenga, the Barguzin, the Goloustnaya and the Tompa. Comparatively low mineralization of the biggest rivers of this group is mainly influenced by the geological structure of their basins which are composed of crystalline rocks.
4) The tributaries with mineralization of 200-300 mg/l are not numerous and are situated in the areas of carbon rocks development which provide high mineralization. But because of their mountain character and small basins areas these streams and rivers roll their waters into the Baikal swiftly having no opportunity to raise their mineralization considerably.
5) The tributaries with very high water mineralization of 300-400 mg/l which include the Bolshaya Buguldeika. Its basin is composed with carbon rocks providing high water mineralization up to 300 mg/l in summer and up to 350-400 mg/l in winter. The group also includes some streams of the island of Olkhon feeding on the water of subterranean horizons with higher mineralization.
By the hydrochemical condition (by the character of water mineralization seasonal changes) the Baikal tributaries are grouped into 5 types.
The Siberian type is characterized by sharp decline of water mineralization during the spring flood and throughout the warm season. The rivers of this type are the Sarma, the Davsha, the Khara-Murin, the Utulik and the Shegnanda.
The Kazakhstan type is when minimum mineralization is observed in spring and raises during the summer and autumn flood and gradually raises in the following autumn and winter time. The rivers of this type are the Selenga with its tributaries and the Turka. 
The East European type is when mineralization gradually goes down for a short time during spring flood. In the rest of the year high and relatively stable mineralization is preserved. The rivers of this type are the Krestovka and the Khargina.
The Baikal type is characterized by quite fast and significant lowering of water mineralization in spring with its following gradual growth in summer and autumn. It is represented most clearly in the rivers of Goloustnaya, Snezhnaya, Polovinnaya and it is clearly reflected in the rivers of Tyya, Tompuda and Barguzin.
The fifth type of the rivers hydrochemical regimen is known for the river of Rel only. It is characterized by considerable lowering of the general water mineralization from early spring (March) till autumn (September) when it comes to the year minimum.
The maximum year indices of water mineralization are 1.5-2.5 times higher in the bigger part of the Baikal basin area.
The Baikal basin hydro resources characteristic gives the general picture of the formation conditions and quantitative and qualitative structure of the water resources. Low river water mineralization, year hydrochemical regimen and great variety of the rivers watersheds, river system density factor and the yearly inflow module fully reflect natural and climatic and geolandscape conditions of the basin.



Four zones of subterranean inflows are singled out which are different in the conditions of space and time spread and formation of the subterranean inflow: zones by the watershed, slope zones, valley zones and zones by the lakes.
The subterranean waters resources depend on the precipitation quantity. The rain and spring thawing waters are very quickly transported along the stream beds and bare slopes by the surface inflow beyond the zone. The subterranean inflow consists of small disconnected streams within the limits of interrupted small (the first metres usually) zone of clefted rocks, and in the frozen thick rocks in the layer of the seasonal thawing. Sometimes there are local accumulations of subterranean waters in the mountain placers which provide functioning of springs with small debit in summer. Water inflow is not sufficient for river bed ice crusts formation, the lack of which as well as the lack of ice is a distinguishing feature of the zone.
The waters are fresh everywhere (their mineralization is less than 100 mg/l, in the highlands it is less than 50 mg/l). Their composition can be quite various, but higher concentration of silicon is noted.
The natural subterranean waters resources are very small and have practical meaning only for small seasonal water supply. By regional estimation of the resources the area of the zone by the watershed should be excluded from the total area of the calculated basin. But the rarely found areas where localization and artificial supply of the subterranean water resources are possible, must be taken into consideration.
The slope zone includes the mountain slopes areas and corresponds to the middle and low river currents. The hydrographic system within its borders is represented by main water flows of great length with considerable depth of the erosion cut (up to 200-300 m). There are forests and moss cover almost everywhere on the slopes. The thin soil layer is developed depending on the slopes steepness. Great practical meaning of such areas as subterranean waters reservoirs in river valleys is pointed out by A.V. Kuzelsky (1969).
The slope zone is characterized by the constant subterranean inflow. The main waters feeding is done by precipitation and transition from the zone by the watershed. The subterranean waters are unloaded into the rivers beds as numerous streams the debit of which, especially in the areas of tectonic violations can be as much as 100 litres per second.
The valley zone is the zone of the constant subterranean inflow with the stable annual and long-term regimen. It usually takes up valley territories of the middle and low current of big rivers and the mouth parts of their main tributaries. Within its borders inter-mountain artesian basins are situated.
The liquid inflow is preserved in the rivers throughout a year. The stream inflow resources are considerably lower there. Formation of great regional subterranean waters currents in the valley zone, on the hydraulically connected water-carrying horizons predetermines the under-bed feeding for separate rivers.
Mineralization of the subterranean waters of the valley zone seldom exceeds 0.6-0.7 g/l, their composition is carbon-calcium. The role of the deep-water flow in the formation of the structure and resources of the surface waters and rather shallow subterranean streams is not great.       
The zone by the lakes has interrupted spread in the coastal zone of big lakes. The subterranean waters flow into the rivers deltas made of thick alluvial layers. On the steep coastal slopes made of crystalline rocks, the subterranean waters resources are very limited, and the slope flow along the clefted zone is of short-term character, only after intensive long rains.
The zone by lakes is different from the valley zone by great influence on the subterranean streams dynamics in the river deltas, by increase of backwater in the lakes owing to hydraulic connection.
All the zones of the subterranean flow can be spread regionally within the folded mountains regions and can be spread locally within the artesian basins.
There are several subterranean flow areas and basins which are characterized by co0mplicated conditions of the subterranean waters resources. These conditions are caused by:
- the peculiarities of geological structure which is determined by divergence of the surface and subterranean watersheds (the basins of the Goloustnaya and the Buguldeika rivers);
- availability of the subterranean overflow in the adjacent rivers and basins built with karsted carbon rocks (the Slyudyanka-Pokhabino basin);
- submarine character of the hydrological reservoirs and the subterranean flow interception (subterranean flow of the area near Lake Khubsugul);
- the development of volcanogeneous deposits and the presence of Mezozoic inter-mountain cavities conditioning the peculiarity of the subterranean flow zone spread (the Dzhida subterranean flow area).
Within the basin the following hydrogeological areas of the second order are distinguished: the Patomo-Vitim zone embracing the rivers of the western and southern Baikal coasts and the upper reaches of the Dzhida river; the Baikal-Chara zone which takes up the Upper Angara and the Baikal tectonic cavities (the lake eastern coast rivers to the north of the Uda basin); the Selenga Dauria is within the Selenga system rivers.
Great artesian basins are the Baikal, the Barguzin and the Upper Angara tectonic cavities. In these basins there is weak water exchange because of their being closed with crosspieces among the mountains. In the Selenga Dauria there is a number of local artesian basins referring to inter-mountainous tectonic cavities, such as the Uda, the Khilok, the Chikoi, the Gusinoozersk ones; on the whole they make up the integral Selenga artesian basin. In the latter the water exchange is reflected weakly because it is partly blocked with crystalline rocks.
The basins are represented by water-bearing complexes of the Jurassic-Cretaceous and Tertiary sediments. The ground waters and the river valleys waters dominate over the waters of other categories. Formation of the ground waters is considerably complicated by long-term frozen rocks which are spread almost everywhere and by a thick layer of the soil grounds seasonal freezing and thawing.
The process of the ground waters formation is different for various nature zones:
- in the zone of excessive wetting the river basins are generally saturated with moisture and because of  that the conditions of coastal regulation of the river-bed inflow are excluded and the ground inflow of that zone goes up in the flood period;
- in the zone of medium wetting the role of coastal regulation is insignificant, because the process of the formation is determined by different signs: negative ones in the phase of the level raising and positive ones in the phase of lowering (in the lowering phase not only river-bed waters are unloaded which have been infiltrated from the river-bed into the shores during the raise, but also ground waters which are accumulated in the places of ground and river-bed waters interrelations);
- in the zone of insufficient wetting the coastal regulation of the river-bed inflow is the strongest and considerable part of the ground waters is lost to be evaporated by the vegetable cover and transportation.
The rivers inflow regimen is formed according to height zones. In the steppe zone the flood starts in April and in the Alpine meadows in the end of May. Within these zones rain floods are recorded in June-September. In autumn-winter period the river inflow regimen is stable. The minimum inflow is observed in February-March.
In the steppe and forest zones the spring flood is 1-1.5 months long, and in the steppe foothills it is less than 1. The ground waters pass the following stages in the year cycle:
- reviving spring through autumn;
- exhaustion autumn through spring.
It appears from the above that the average annual value of the ground inflow is determined by the quantity if the infiltrating atmospheric precipitation, thawing waters, the capacity of subterranean depository, the height and the time of snow cover bedding preventing the soil from the seasonal freezing as well as the total value of negative air temperatures.
The rivers of the Baikal , the Barguzin and the Upper Angara cavities feed on ground water to considerable extent. For instance, the quota of the ground waters participation reaches 73% in the Davsha river, 64% in the Barguzin, 49% in the Upper Angara. In the sub-area of the Selenga Dauria the ground waters participation in the river-bed inflow formation is somewhat less and is 36% in the Selenga, 44% in the Dzhida, 47% in the Chikoi, 43% in the Khilok (Table 16).
On the territory of Lake Baikal basin two types of artesian basins are distinguished according to their regional significance: the Transbaikal and the Baikal ones.
The second ones are formed by a thick (up to 3-5 km) layer of loose and low-cemented sediments (sands, shingle, gravel, sandstones and clays) and  are great subterranean reservoirs of fresh subterranean waters, well protected from pollution.
The artesian basins of the Transbaikal type are formed by well cemented sandstones, conglomerates, argillites, coals of the Mesozoic age and contain considerably less subterranean waters resources. In addition, the waters from the depth of 50-100 m are often with higher mineralization (over 1 g/l) and are not suitable for industrial or drinking supply.
According to the degree of the region territory provision with subterranean waters three region categories are distinguished: well provided, average provided and low provided.
The first category includes inter-mountain cavities of the Baikal type with practically unlimited amount of water selection (up to 3-5 cub. m/sec and more). The second category includes artesian basins of the Transbaiksl type with the fresh waters amount level less than 1 cub. m/sec. The third category includes mountain ranges with limited (less than 5-10 l/sec) cleft waters exploitation resources.
The waters of river valleys alluvial sediments and great zones of tectonic violations do not belong to any zone.
Cleaving the mountain ranges and cavities, the river valleys and breaks concentrate big amounts of fresh subterranean waters suitable for economic and drinking needs. Nowadays at all the big waterpoints of the Baikal region river valleys waters or cleft and vein waters.
Nowadays on the Baikal basin territory 55 freshwater deposits with exploitation stores with the amount of 1,100 thousand cub. m per day are explored and approved by the State and Territorial commissions, including deposits for populated areas with the stores of 480 thousand cub. m per day.
The region subterranean waters are very various in their chemical composition and are subject to a certain geochemical zones. In artesian basins of the Baikal type (the Ust-Selenginsk, the Barguzin, the Upper Angara basins) their mineralization down to 2,000 m does not exceed 0.5-1 g/l by mostly hydrocarbon-sodium and calcium-sodium composition. The cavities of the Transbaikal type (the Borgoi, the Gusinoozersk, the Orongoi, the Ivolginsk cavities and others) are characteristic of very irregular and, on the whole, low water inclusion of water capacity (Borisenko, Adumnov, Litvinenko, 1990).
Subterranean waters which are of interest for water supply are timed to the structures of active developments and are, as a rule, in river valleys. Considerable part of populated areas and industrial works are supplied with subterranean waters.



Hydrosphere (water resources) plays the decisive role in the social-economic sphere. The nature transforming economic activities within the Baikal basin is developed in the coastal water protecting zone of the Baikal, in the intermountain cavities and valleys of big rivers, such as the Selenga, the Uda, the Khilok, the Chikoi, the Temnik, the Dzhida, the Barguzin, the Upper Angara, the Tugnui and others. There such industrial systems as the Baikal, the Slyudyanka, the Kultuk, the Olkhon, the Severobaikalsk and the Barguzin ones and the Irkutsk hydrosystem are developed.
The Nizhneselenginsk industrial system takes up the western part of the Buryatia Kabansk region and stretches along the left bank of the Selenga river and the southern coast of the Baikal from the Snezhnaya river mouth to the Selenga river mouth. There are 10 industrial centres there the settlements of Selenginsk, Talovka, Kamensk, Tataurovo and a part of Transsiberian railway with big populated areas (the settlements of Vydrino, Tankhoi and the town of Babushkin), and on the right bank of the Selenga river the people are engaged in agricultural production activity.
The Baikalsk industrial system in the Irkuts region takes up the territory from the mouth of the Utulik river to the Pankovka river mouth. There are seven industrial works there with all the vital services as well as tourist centres. There the principal water consumer is the Baikalsk cellulose and paper making plant which makes the main ecological problem in the Baikal region (the Irkutsk region).
The Slyudyanka industrial system of the Irkutsk region takes up the Baikal coastal zone from the Toloi river mouth to the Bezymyannaya river mouth. There industry is represented by 15 works the biggest of which are the locomotive depot, the Pereval quarry, the Baikal-Marble organization and the housing and communal services. In general this industrial system uses up to 3,500-4,000 thousand cub. m of water annually (the Irkutsk region).
The Kultuk industrial system of the Irkutsk region is situated on the territory from the Angasolka river mouth to the Toloi river mouth. The industry includes 7 objects. The water usage includes the water supply distance and the Kultuk meat factory. On the whole the industrial system uses annually 500-600 thousand cub. m of water (the Irkutsk region).
The Olkhon district is stretched from the Buguldeika river mouth to Cape Ryty including the island of Olkhon and the coastal zone of the Olkhon administrative district of the Irkutsk region. There are no industrial works there. According to the report of the water services office, the main water consumers are butter factory in the village of Khuzhir, the Maloye More fish factory and others there are 8 works with the annual water consuming amount of 250-400 thousand cub. m.
The Severobaikalsk industrial system partially includes the Severobaikalsk district of Buryatia and stretches along the Baikal-Amur railway. In 1974 the town of Severobaikalsk and big settlements to the east of it were built: Novy Uoyan, Angoya and Yanchukan. On the whole the Severobaikalsk district has become a great construction site, which caused the population growth in the district (from 6.5 to 80 thousand people). Much has been done to build houses, the railway, motor transport and communal services, which include more than 10 big water consuming industrial works nowadays. 3,700-4,500 thousand cub. m of water are consumed annually.
The Bargizin industrial district is on the territory of the Bargizin district of Buryatia. The main industrial objects are along the lower stream and in the mouth of the Barguzin river (the settlement of Ust-Barguzin). In the Barguzin river basin there are big populated areas and objects, as well as agricultural production is developed. In Ust-Barguzin there are such objects as the fish processing complex, the meat factory, the fish-farm and the bakery which consume 2,000-2,500 thousand cub. m of water annually.
The Irkutsk hydro system on the Angara river is situated 65 km away from its source and is the first stage of the Angara hydropower stations cascade. The dam backwater is spread from the Irkutsk hydro system to Lake Baikal raising its level about 1 metre in comparison with the natural one. The hydro system water reservoir consists of two parts: the Angara and Lake Baikal. The Irkutsk hydro system is a gigantic water consumer in Lake Baikal basin.
The number of water consumers is 105, and 40 of them are in the Irkutsk region. All the works and organizations registered as water consumers are divided into 3 fields of industrial activity: housing and communal, agricultural and industrial ones which include all the other branches of industry, transport and services. The main water consumer is the Baikalsk cellulose and paper plant and the town of Baikalsk. The plant takes up to 92% of waterpoints and 99% of wastewaters from the coastal industrial systems of the Irkutsk region.
The Barguzin river basin (the area 211.0 sq. km). On its territory two administrative districts of the Republic of Buryatia are situated, the Kurumkan and the Barguzin ones. The economics is of agricultural character. The water usage is based upon agricultural water supply.
The Uda river basin (34,800 sq. km) takes up the territories of the Zaigrayevo, the Khorinsk, the Kizhinga districts and one-third of the Yeravna district and the eastern part of Ulan Ude. The main tributaries of the Uda rivers are the Ilka, the Khudan, the Ona and the Kurba rivers.
There are104 populated areas there. The main water consumers are the agricultural sector (75.3%), industry and other branches.
The Selenga basin includes the territories of 6 administrative districts of the Republic of Buryatia without the basins of the tributaries, the rivers of Uda, Dzhida, Khilok, Chikoi which will be considered separately: the Pribaikalsk, the Ivolginsk, the Tarbagatai, the Selenginsk, the Kyakhta and Ulan Ude.
The basin is industrially loaded because there are big industrial objects within it: the Gusinoozersk power station, the Ulan Ude heating plants # 1 and # 2, the Kholboldzhinsky coal mine, the industrial objects of Ulan Ude, the Selenginsk cellulose and paper making plant, the Timlyui asbestos and cement plant and other works.
The main water consumers are industry and other non-agricultural branches.
The Dzhida river basin takes up the territory of 23,500 sq. km and is characterized by a very developed hydrographic system. The territory of the basin takes up the Zakamensk and the Dzhida districts of the republic having 353,170 hectares of agricultural lands, 14,042 hectares of which are arable lands, 7,685 hectares are non-agricultural lands and 1,257,350 hectares of forests. 11,316 hectares belong to citizens and 4,620 hectares to farms, 62,430 hectares belong to local administrations 14,990 hectares of them belong to town ones and 47,440 hectares belong to village administrations.
The main part of water usage is taken by irrigation 41.1%. Industry and housing and communal services use almost equal quantities of water 4.6 and 4.4 million cub. m respectively (22.6%).
Agriculture does not produce wastewater. The wastewaters of the industrial plants are 1.64 million cub. m, of housing and communal services 1.29 million cub. m.
The amount of water usage in the Dzhida district goes down annually.
The Khilok river basin is situated to the south of the Uda basin. On the northern side it is surrounded by the mountain ranges of Tsagan-Daban and Tsagan-Khurtei. In its lower stream the Khilok is separated from the Tugnui tributary by the Zagan mountain range. The southern watershed is made of the Malkhan and Yablonevy mountain ranges. The area of the basin is 38,500 sq. km, 10,850 sq. km of which are in the Republic of Buryatia, 27,650 sq. km are in the Chita region.
There are 5 administrative districts on the territory of the basin, 2 of them (the Mukhorshibir and the Buchura ones) belong to the Republic of Buryatia, 3 (the Petrovsk-Zabaikalsky, the Khilok and a part of the Chita districts) are in the Chita region. There are 429,580 hectares of agricultural lands there.
The biggest industrial objects are the Tugnui and the Okino-Klyuchevsky coal mines and the Petrovsk-Zabaikalsky steel foundry. The main loading of the housing and communal services is that of Petrovsk-Zabaikalsky, of big working settlements such as Bichura, Mukhorshibir and Khilok.
The main water consumer is the system of irrigation which takes up to 69% of water supply.
The Chikoi river basin is situated in the south-easternmost part of the Baikal region (on the territory of the Russian Federation), it borders on the Orkhon river basin (Mongolia) in the south.
Agricultural water supply (irrigation) makes up the principal part of water consuming, its quota is 87.1%. Industry and other branches taken together use an average of 0.61 million cub. m, or 7%, housing and communal services use 0.16 million cub. m, or 1.8%.

The conclusion is:

1. The amount of water usage in the Baikal region has reduced since the 90s, especially in agriculture.
2. The principal part of the region water usage is the Selenga basin, because practically entire industrial complex of Lake Baikal basin is concentrated on its territory.
3. Among the industrial water consuming objects the main one is the Gusinoozersk power station, where the annual amount is within 450-470 million cubic metres.




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