Last update : 27. January 2020
- Pakistan is a country with a food surplus
- Water scarcity in Pakistan
- Water consumption – Pakistan against peace
- Pakistan does not suffer from water scarcity or lack of water.
- Water needs per capita per day
- Demand for water for industry
- Upward trend in precipitation
- Faulty irrigation system
- How can you save water?
- Improving the efficiency of irrigation
- Good aquifer management
- Conservation strategies
- Investment in the irrigation industry
- The right way to tackle the problem
- Improvement of dams versus irrigation system
- Construction of small dams
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By 2025, Pakistan will run out of water, or in five to seven years, unprecedented droughts will hit the country.
According to the Newsletter 2017 of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Pakistan is now a country with a food surplus. But this food surplus consumes 104 million hectares (MAP) of water per year.
Water management in Pakistan is at its limit, John Briscoe said in a report Water loss through irrigation in Pakistan is among the highest in the world.
According to international standards, 35 gallons per capita per day is enough for a healthy lifestyle. If we want to provide every citizen of the country with this amount of water, we only need 12 MAFs. Taking into account the generally accepted losses in water supply systems of 30 cubic centimetres, the internal needs of 207 million people here do not exceed 17 MAP.
Industrial consumption in Pakistan is less than 10 DPIs. For example, the actual demand for water to meet all domestic, industrial and food security needs is less than 77 EAPs, while the country’s river system alone provides an average of 145 EAPs per year.
There is widespread concern that climate change will reduce our natural water supply, but data from the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in the UK shows that rainfall in the country has not decreased in the last 115 years. Indeed, the trend is upward.
The source is available in abundance. The problem lies in our consumption habits; 104 PPPs are spent on irrigation, of which 54 are avoidable waste – if we invest in efficient irrigation methods.
Indian Punjab produces 30% more with the same amount of water, while California produces 50% more. Sandra Postel noted in her book Die letzte Oase (1992) that the efficiency of irrigation can be increased by up to 50 percentage points using the available technologies.
However, major progress has been made since the early 1990s and current water-saving technologies can enable our farmers to produce food surpluses using less than 50 MAPs of water.
ALWAYS: Top 5 water scarcity in Pakistan in relation to ESSAYS
The urban and industrial sectors are still undervalued, despite the manageable needs of 27 MASFs or their districts.
In most cities, the needs of households and businesses can be met by investing in good water management, preventing pollution of aquifers and rivers, adequate rainwater treatment and good waste water disposal.
Good groundwater management, improved irrigation efficiency and environmental protection do not involve very large amounts of money and expensive contracts and are sustainable in the long term.
Investment in irrigation, the urban and industrial sectors will not only help to secure the water supply in these sectors, but will also solve the problems of water saturation and salinisation in a synergetic way by removing the stagnant reservoirs that are the breeding ground for the vectors.
Nature conservation is crucial and national water policy aims to reduce IPA-related waste by one third. This requires investment in highly efficient irrigation systems and the creation of new dynamic agricultural services at federal and provincial level.
Natural watercourses that have now become sewage systems will change from belief in water to belief in water as they once were, and many environmental benefits will become visible.
Concerns and panic are usually followed by so-called delicate but plausible solutions, which focus on large infrastructure investments with borrowed funds.
Instead of focusing on the waste of 54 WFP in the irrigation sector, for example, the focus is on dams and the diversion of more than 20 of those dams.000 MAP of water flowing in the Indus delta, and billions of dollars are spent on projects such as dam construction – the effects of river delta erosion and dam salinisation (as in the case of the Mangla and Tarbela dams) are completely ignored, and problems such as waste in the irrigation sector, swamp formation, salinisation, etc. are exacerbated.д.
Dependence on bad advice and foreign credit is no longer an option. We have to understand our own system, our own forces and believe in ourselves to get out of the swamp we are in.
This approach is necessary to clean our water from all types of pollution. There are small states in the world that treat more than 90% of their water. Why can’t we do that while at the same time studying the small dams we can build without being dependent on others?
Precipitation may have increased, but its duration has shortened, so the intensive flow needs to be maintained and preserved for future use. A national consensus needs to be reached.
It is time to embrace the principle of eternal sustainability and no longer allow ourselves to be misled by investment modules that contribute to the fight against fear.
Am Hassan Abbas
The author is an expert in hydrology and water management.
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