Pakistan needs to increase water storage

Senior Vice President (SVP) SAARC Chamber Iftikhar Ali Malik Wednesday said Pakistan badly needs to expand its water storage by 2025 to avert looming water crisis and meet expected demand of 165 billion cubic meters in the country as population is swelling rapidly.

Greeting newly elected body of Environment Journalists Association of Pakistan (EJAP) who called on him at his residence led by its President Samiullah Randhawa. Secretary EJAP Ms Xari Jaleel, Vice president Amir Zahid Baig, Treasurer Abdul Qadir Madni and Governing Members Muzaffar Sial, Shahzada Irfan, Saif Cheema and Nawaz Sangra were also present on this occasion.

On this occasion, Iftikhar Malik appreciated the members of the organization for their efforts to create awareness about the climate change and assured them all available support from the SAARC CCI platform for accelerating awareness campaign among the masses. He said there is dire need of focusing our attention on our wastage of water in our country as he termed insufficient storage capacity one of the major reasons behind an increase in extreme weather events like severe flooding and prolonged droughts. He feared that that the situation would get worse in coming years due to lack of storage capacity.

He further said our underground water is also being contaminated and if steps are not taken on appropriate time, he feared we could not be able to drink hygienic water in coming years. “Sixty per cent of the groundwater in a river basin supporting more than 750 million people in Pakistan, India, Nepal and Bangladesh is not drinkable or usable for irrigation, he added.

He emphasised on policies and action for climate change mitigation, technology transfer, financing and investment mechanism, education, training and awareness, monitoring, assessment and management of impact and risks due to climate change. He said Pakistan had a strong national commitment and working on innovative business models to gain financial and technical assistance from both domestic and international players. Pakistan would require $10.70 billion per annum as the cost of adaptation to climate change and mitigation cost would range from $8 billion to $17 billion.