Thursday, June 28, 2018

Pakistan Water Crisis: Facts and Myths

Pakistan is believed to be in the midst of a water crisis that is said to pose an existential threat to the country. These assertions raise a whole series of questions on the source of the crisis and possible solutions to deal with it. The New Water Policy adopted in April 2018 is a good start but it needs a lot more focus and continuing investments.

Indus Water System. Courtesy: The Friday Times
Questions on Water Crisis: 

How severe is Pakistan's water crisis? Is India contributing to this crisis? How many million acre feet (MAF) of water flows in Pakistan? What are its sources? Glaciers? Rain? Groundwater? How much of it is stored in dams and other reservoirs? What is the trend of per capita water availability in Pakistan? What sectors are the biggest consumers of water in Pakistan? Why does agriculture consume over 95% of all available water? How can Pakistan produce "more crop per drop"? What are Pakistan's options in dealing with the water crisis? Build more dams? Recharge groundwater? Use improved irrigation techniques like sprinklers and drip irrigation? Would metering water at the consumers and charging based on actual use create incentives to be more efficient in water use?

Water Availability: 

Pakistan receives an average of 145 million acre feet (MAF) of water a year, according to the Indus River System Authority (IRSA) report. Water availability at various canal headworks is about 95 million acre feet (MAF).  About 50%-90% comes from the glacial melt while the rest comes from monsoon rains.  Additional 50 MAF of groundwater is extracted annually via tube wells.

Pakistan Water Availability. Source: Water Conference Presentation

The total per capita water availability is about 900 cubic meters per person, putting Pakistan in the water-stressed category.

India Factor: 

What is the impact of India's actions on water flow in Pakistan? Under the Indus Basin Water Treaty, India has the exclusive use of the water from two eastern rivers: Ravi and Sutlej. Pakistan has the right to use all of the water from the three western rivers: Chenab, Jhelum and Indus. However, India can build run of the river hydroelectric power plants with minimal water storage to generate electricity.

Currently, India is not using all of the water from the two eastern rivers. About 4.6 million acre feet (MAF) of water flows into Pakistan via Ravi and Sutlej. Water flow in Pakistan will be reduced if India decides to divert more water from Ravi and Sutlej for its own use.

Secondly, India can store water needed for run-of-the-river hydroelectric plants on the western rivers. When new hydroelectric projects are built on these rivers in India, Pakistan suffers from reduced water flows during the periods when these reservoirs are filled by India. This happened when Baglihar dam was filled by India as reported by Harvard Professor John Briscoe who was assigned by the World Bank to work on IWT compliance by both India and Pakistan.

Pakistan is also likely to suffer when India ensures its hydroelectric reservoirs are filled in periods of low water flow in the three western rivers.

Water Storage Capacity: 

Pakistan's water storage capacity in its various dams and lakes is about 15 million acre feet (MAF), about 10% of all water flow. It's just enough water to cover a little over a month  of water needed. There are several new dams in the works which will double Pakistan's water storage capacity when completed in the future.

Since 1970s, the only significant expansion in water storage capacity occurred on former President Musharraf's watch when Mangla Dam was raised 30 feet to increase its capacity by nearly 3 million acre feet (MAF). Musharraf increased water projects budget to Rs. 70 billion which was reduced to Rs. 51 billion by PPP government and further decreased to Rs. 36 billion by PMLN government.  It was only the very last PMLN budget passed by Shahid Khaqan Abbasi's outgoing government that increased water development allocation to Rs. 65 billion, a far cry from Rs. 70 billion during Musharraf years given the dramatic drop in the value of the Pakistani rupee.

Water Consumption: 

Domestic, business and industrial consumers use about 5 million acre feet while the rest is consumed by the agriculture sector to grow food. Just 5% improvement in irrigation efficiency can save Pakistan about 7.5 million acre feet , the same as the current storage capacity of the country's largest Tarbela dam.

Given the vast amount of water used to grow crops, there is a significant opportunity to save water and increase yields by  modernizing the farm sector.

National Water Policy:

Pakistan's Common Council of Interests (CCI) with the prime minister and the provincial chief ministers recently adopted a National Water Policy (NWP) in April 2018. It is designed to deal with “the looming shortage of water” which poses “a grave threat to (the country’s) food, energy and water security” and constitutes “an existential threat…”as well as “the commitment and intent” of the federal and provincial governments to make efforts “ to avert the water crisis”.

The NWP supports significant increases in the public sector investment for the water sector by the Federal Government from 3.7% of the development budget in 2017-18 to at least 10% in 2018-19 and 20% by 2030; the establishment of an apex body to approve legislation, policies and strategies for water resource development and management, supported by a multi- sectoral Steering Committee of officials at the working level; and the creation of a Groundwater Authority in Islamabad and provincial water authorities in each of the provinces.

More Crop Per Drop:

"More crop per drop" program will focus on improving water use efficiency by promoting drip and sprinkler irrigation in agriculture.

The Punjab government started this effort with the World Bank with $250 million investment.  The World Bank is now providing additional $130 million financing for the Punjab Irrigated Agriculture Productivity Improvement Program Phase-I.

The project is the Punjab Government's initiative called High-Efficiency Irrigation Systems (HEIS) to more than doubles the efficiency of water use. Under the project, drip irrigation systems have been installed on about 26,000 acres, and 5,000 laser leveling units have been provided. The additional financing will ensure completion of 120,000 acres with ponds in saline areas and for rainwater harvesting, and filtration systems for drinking water where possible, according to the World Bank.

Groundwater Depletion: 

 Pakistan, India, and the United States are responsible for two-thirds of the groundwater use globally,  according to a report by University College London researcher Carole Dalin.  Nearly half of this groundwater is used to grow wheat and rice crops for domestic consumption and exports.  This puts Pakistan among the world's largest exporters of its rapidly depleting groundwater.

Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources is working with  United States' National Air and Space Administration (NASA) to monitor groundwater resources in the country.

Water Stress Satellite Map Source: NASA 
NASA's water stress maps shows extreme water stress across most of Pakistan and northern, western and southern parts of India.

The US space agency uses Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) to measure earth's groundwater. GRACE’s pair of identical satellites, launched in 2002, map tiny variations in Earth's gravity. Since water has mass, it affects these measurements. Therefore, GRACE data can help scientists monitor where the water is and how it changes over time, according to NASA.

Aquifer Recharge:

Building large dams is only part of the solution to water stress in Pakistan. The other, more important part, is building structures to trap rain water for recharging aquifers across the country.

Typical Aquifer in Thar Desert 

Pakistan's highly water stressed Punjab province is beginning recognize the need for replacing groundwater. Punjab Government is currently in the process of planning a project to recharge aquifers for groundwater management in the Province by developing the economical and sustainable technology and to recharge aquifer naturally and artificially at the available site across the Punjab. It has allocated Rs. 582.249 million to execute this project over four years.

Summary:

Pakistan is in the midst of a severe water crisis that could pose an existential threat if nothing is done to deal with it.  The total per capita water availability is about 900 cubic meters per person, putting the country in the water-stressed category. Agriculture sector uses about 95% of the available water. There are significant opportunities to achieve greater efficiency by using drop irrigation systems being introduced in Punjab. The New Water Policy is a good start but it requires continued attention with greater investments and focus to deal with all aspects of the crisis.

Here's a video discussion on the subject:

https://youtu.be/nrfF3ppBzpo




Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Groundwater Depletion in Pakistan

Water Scarce Pakistan

Cycles of Drought and Floods in Pakistan

Pakistan to Build Massive Dams

Dust Bowl in Thar Desert Region

Dasht River in Balochistan

Hindus in Pakistan

34 comments:

Tariq said...

Big dam big fool
There is no money
And all three provinces against it
It will break Pakistan
No money for desalination

Poor mans solutions

Water storage thru other means
Drip irrigation
Rain water harvesting
Ban soft drinks n bottled water
Water rationing
Water recycling

Water shortage all over even in Islamabad
Plenty of water for military so they won't fight India

Mayraj said...

Namibia and Denmark-major water innovators:

It seems to me not only does Pakistan need to conserve water, it also needs to recycle water.

Since Pakistan depends on cotton industry, since cotton is such a thirsty crop, it is a good candidate for water recycling.

And did you know about Namibia's use of water recycling for drinking water?

https://www.pri.org/stories/2016-12-15/recycling-sewage-drinking-water-no-big-deal-theyve-been-doing-it-namibia-50-years
Recycling sewage into drinking water is no big deal. They've been doing it in Namibia for 50 years.
Also see news about recycling water


https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/analysis-fracking-waters-dirty-secret/


Fracking Water's Dirty Secret--Recycling
The oil and gas industry is finding that less is more in the push to recycle water used in hydraulic fracturing.


"Foxconn has a similar system at its facility in Sakai, Japan."
https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/wisconsin/articles/2018-06-19/foxconn-investing-in-30-million-water-recycling-system

Foxconn Investing in $30 Million Water Recycling System
Foxconn Technology Group says it's investing in a $30 million recycling system to significantly reduce the amount of water it draws from Lake Michigan for its planned manufacturing complex in southeast Wisconsin.
"Denmark — home of the world's most extensive water control system — according to a UNESCO report on sustainable water supplies."

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2015/02/08/water-reuse-technologies/23048829/


https://www.citylab.com/environment/2015/12/why-copenhagen-has-almost-perfect-water/421728/

Why Copenhagen Has Almost Perfect Water
https://www.thestar.com.my/lifestyle/features/2015/04/13/danish-innovations-in-water-sector-keep-pollution-at-bay/
Danish innovations in water sector keep pollution at bay

http://cphpost.dk/news/business/chinese-signing-deal-with-danish-water-tech-companies.html

Chinese investors sign deal with Danish water tech companies
Waterworks project in China can open doors to many more opportunities for Danish exports in the future

Report-US delegation visits Denmark
https://www.dk-export.com/media/2772933/us-delegation-2016-brochure-v4.pdf

California has signed a landmark agreement to share the latest water technology, research and management techniques with the Kingdom of Denmark.
https://www.mnwd.com/california-denmark-water-mou/






https://www.ebmud.com/wastewater/recycled-water/

California behind Namibia!

"Recycled water is California's single largest source of new water supplies."
https://www.npr.org/2018/02/20/587195891/california-aims-to-get-past-the-yuck-factor-of-recycled-wastewater

California Aims To Get Past The Yuck Factor Of Recycled Wastewater

W said...

The water crisis is truly an existential threat to Pakistan. India has recognized this and is slyly going after all the rivers in J&K as the economic warfare of the next century. In a short war they will be able literally turn all of Pakistan's river beds dry. No water means a collapse of crop output, famine and a massive internal crisis that can be triggered anytime India wants to. Water is the new WMD of the 21st century. A way to wipe out Pakistan without using nukes.

Consider the biggest threats to its existence that Pakistan has faced in the last 70 years:
1. The defeat of 1971
2. India's 1974 Nuclear Tests
3. The PTT/ Afghanistan Origin Terrorism of the late 2000s

The new threat on this list is the Water Wars of the next 30 years. Building water reservoirs is the biggest challenge facing Pakistan and the key to its Economic and Social security.

Apart from implementing successfully all the programs highlighted in the article, and building new water reservoirs throughout the country, Pakistan has to build new dams. The golden opportunity presented by CPEC to build those dams Pakistan cannot finance on its own and which no western agency will finance or help construct must not be lost. These are:

- 15000 MW Katzarah Dam (will be the biggest Dam & water reservoir in the world)
- 7100 MW Bunji Dam
- 4500 MW Diamer Bhasha Dam
- 4320 MW Bunji Dam
- 3600 MW Kalabagh

nayyer ali said...

Dams allow you to store water so it can be transferred from wet seasons or years to dry ones, but they don't increase the total water availability in an absolute sense. As part of a water management strategy it is essential to build out further dams. In rational terms Kalabagh is an important piece of that, but there is so much mistrust that the dam will be used to divert water to Punjab at the expense of the other provinces. There should be some mechanism to assure that water is divided fairly (the biggest issue will be the reduction in flow needed to fill the reservoir, which will take several years).
Human water consumption is overwhelmingly for agriculture. Urban water use is a fraction of agricultural use. Groundwater depletion is also a major concern when too much gets pumped from aquifers that don't get adequately recharged.
In the long run Pakistan's water situation can be well managed with approaches that reduce agricultural water waste. Drip irrigation systems are expensive up front but allow much less water use for irrgated fields, and that will have to be used on a massive scale.

XYZ said...

@W
Katzarah Dam is a pipe dream, a major defence issue and will wipe out Skardu from the map. A total population of 223,847 falling in the reservoir area will be displaced. From defence point of view, the strategic control of the Siachen and Kargil sectors and of the Line of Control by Pakistan Army and PAF from Skardu will be lost because the operational activities of the two institutions will be badly affected while on the other hand, a huge infrastructure developed in Skardu and Gamba costing billions of rupees will also be submerged..

Riaz Haq said...

GE to refurbish Mangla power station by 2023


https://steelguru.com/power/ge-to-refurbish-mangla-power-station-by-2023/511191

Mangla power station, located in Kashmir, has an installed capacity of 1,000MW. The existing station has 10 generating units, having capacity of 100MW each with a useful life of 30 years extendable up to 35 years.

The first unit was commissioned in 1967. All units at Mangla have efficiently been working and generating electricity since then in accordance with their installed capacity despite completion of their useful life long ago.

The Wapda planned to refurbish the existing Mangla hydropower station to benefit from additional 2.88 million acres feet of water and 40 feet additional water head available with completion of Mangla dam raising project in 2009.

Sheikh said the modern technology is being used to optimise generation capacity of Mangla hydropower station. “The quantum of water, which generates 1,000MW, will be sufficient to generate over 1,300MW.”

He said GE is expanding its footprints in hydropower, coal, gas and renewable generation across the country. GE is expected to power 40 percent of the country’s overall electricity generation by 2019.

The company’s executive added that “Pakistan’s generation capacity will stand at around 35,000MW by 2019; of which 14,000MW would be generated through GE equipment.”

On regasified liquefied natural gas- (RLNG) fired power plants, Mr Sheikh said Haveli Bahadurshah and Bhikki plants have achieved their commissioning following rigorous testing while the Balloki plant would shortly be commissioned. He added that “The gas-run power plants are most cost effective power generation plants in the country and would add 3,600MW into the system. There are some teething problems, but now the plants are operating at full capacity.”



Riaz Haq said...

The Indus Inland Waterways System – the next big thing for Asia?

https://www.dawn.com/news/1241827

There are few river systems in the world as long and as reliable as the Indus. The river and its tributaries connect most major cities of Pakistan with each other and the Arabian Sea, but also Kabul in Afghanistan and the towns such as Gurdaspur and Ludhiana in India.

If a carefully engineered Indus Inland Waterways System (IIWS) is developed, connecting several cities in the three countries with the Arabian Sea, it could bring a huge economic boon in the entire region inhabited by 500 million people, including western China and Central Asia.

The economics and advantages of inland waterways are well documented, including in trade, commerce and engineering.

History of missed opportunities
Historically, this potential has existed since the times of British Raj. With the construction of Suez Canal in 1869, the British developed the port at Karachi and improved its transportation links with the interior through roads, railways and steamer services in the Indus.

Although proposals were put up for intercity linkage canals through the Indus, the British engineers saw more economic potential in building irrigation canals (a similar thing happened in the Ganges system).

While development of railways took care of inland transportation needs, the rivers were diverted into irrigation canals to transform the river basin into what is now known as the largest contiguous irrigation system of the world – IBIS (Indus Basin Irrigation System).

And it has sucked the rivers dry.

On the one hand, except for the monsoon months, the Indus delta receives very little to no flow going into the sea, and on the other, ever increasing irrigation demands are calling for damming or diverting even the leftover waters from the environmentally degraded rivers.

It seems almost impossible that the irrigation sector will let go its waters for maritime transportation.

The hope of agricultural efficiency
However, there is a ray of hope. The irrigation efficiency in IBIS is one of the lowest in the world. It is only half that of Imperial Valley in USA, and about two-third of its counterparts in Nile Valley and Indian Punjab.

Efficient irrigation can spare half the water being diverted from the rivers. This would only make economic sense if the water saved through efficiency can lead to more profit. IIWS provides that engine.

The International Monetary Fund's (IMF) 2015 World Economic Database reports that the agriculture sector’s total contribution to Pakistan’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is 23pc, or USD 60billion.

Irrigated agriculture provides approximately USD 45bn of this amount. In contrast, the Mississippi waterways serve approximately 200m people with an annual turnover of USD 70bn.

A fully developed IIWS would potentially serve more than 500m people in the region and could contribute to GDP far more than the current share of irrigated agriculture.

But IIWS will not replace agriculture, instead it will enhance agricultural productivity. Basin-scale investments in irrigation efficiency, therefore, make good economic sense.

Even with the current irrigation technologies being used efficiency can double, and with new emerging irrigation technologies we may be able to produce the same agricultural output with only a fifth of water.

A test run
The government of Punjab (GoP) has taken the initiative to test start a 200 kilometre commercial waterway in the Indus River between Attock and Daudkhel. Through a public private partnership, GoP has established the Inland Water Transport Development Company (IWTDC). The company’s mission is to ultimately connect Port Qasim with Nowshehra.

Riaz Haq said...

Inland water transportation -- Cost-effective and eco-friendly option

https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/2001/03/12/stories/09127101.htm


WHY inland water transport? Mainly because of the many distinct advantages it has over the other modes. IWT routes are developed along existing rivers, canals and waterways and, unlike road and rail, do not need to get into the vexed questio n of land acquisition. The per km cost of development of a waterway is insignificant when compared to that of an equivalent length or equivalent traffic capacity of rail or highway. The maintenance cost of a waterway is also less compared to the corresponding costs for rail or road. The time taken to develop waterway routes is, similarly, negligible.

The most important factor, in my view, is that IWT provides a service that is far more environment-friendly than either road or rail. In the context of damage caused to the fragile ecosystem by rapid economic development, it is impossible to overestimate the importance of this factor. Road transport, in particular, relies exclusively on fossil fuels which are not only polluting, but also finite in character.

The continued use of such fuel must inevitably lead to depletion of existing reserves. Finally, congested roads and indisciplined drivers result in accidents on our highways. Alternative transport strategies, such as IWT, therefore, do a major service by tackling congestion on roads, thus reducing accidents and the horrendous loss of life they cause.

Other parameters are equally revealing. IWT remains, in most situations, the least costly, the least energy consuming and the least hazardous mode of transportation. The order of the magnitude of the ratios between water, rail and road transportation is within the ranges of 1-2-5 in cost and 1-1.5-4 in energy consumption. These ratios are common for many typical routes in diverse waterway systems in the US, Bangladesh and China, though the cost structure is different in each of these countries.

It is unfortunate that we have not realised the immense flexibility of IWT in bringing about decongestion of roads. By increasing draft marginally, the capacity of IWT goes up exponentially. If a two-metre draft can support a traffic load of 150 million tonnes, the addition of a mere half of metre to the depth, bringing it to 2.5 metres, increases the carrying capacity to nearly 300 million tonnes. The facility of using relatively small amounts of capital to increase the existing capacity quite sharply is not available either in road or rail. For countries in the process of rapid development, it becomes a major option in the expansion of transportation capacities.

The effect of an efficient IWT is seen in the development of otherwise land-locked backward areas. IWT not only brings sea cargo to the hinterland, but also serves as a low-cost marketing channel, enabling small rural communities to access other communit ies not only as a market but also as a source of supply. In either case, the economy benefits immensely.

If all these are direct benefits of the development of an efficient IWT, the indirect benefits are no less relevant. The development of an efficient IWT system in the eastern region will undoubtedly promote the growth of a vibrant ship-building industry. Too often, when discussing the shipbuilding industry, we think in terms of VLCCs, ULCCs or very large container vessels. The possibility that the ship-building industry in the eastern region will be able to hold its own against the larger global players is remote. We are unlikely to be competitive in the construction of sophisticated ocean-going vessels.

Riaz Haq said...

As to the water cutoff, it's just an empty threat by crazy Hindu Nationalists.


Can India really threaten Pakistan over water? TFT asked Jaweid Ishaque, an economist who has worked in agriculture and is editing a forthcoming monograph on water in Pakistan by Adnan Asdar Ali, a civil engineer with diverse experience in structural and forensic engineering, who has become an advocate for awareness on water in Pakistan.

TFT: Why have they left it like that?

JI: India has built a lot of dams—small dams. You need to undertand the geography to understand the politics. They will have to let the water through particularly from May to September which is peak monsoon flow season. It is all dhamki that they will stop our water.

Let’s assume India decides to store and build storage for 10MAF on the eastern rivers, which it could do. But the day India takes over 5% Pakistan can go to the IWC Tribunal or even the ICJ. Both these courses are open to us, without need for recourse to diplomatic spats or armed threats.

TFT: So India just sat there all these years?

JI: The IWT of 1960 has a clause that says that for 30 years, other than these approved projects, India and Pakistan can’t interfere in each other’s waters and cannot make any structures on rivers allocated to the other country. Even beyond the 30 years if India wishes to develop dams or barrages on the western rivers they will need to share the design so Pakistani experts can ensure that the parameters of minimum water storage are being complied with.

We are making them on the western rivers, but they are already approved. We did Mangla, then Tarbela and then we had approval for two or three more. We have exclusive use by the treaty. We can keep on making dams on these western rivers whether for hydel or storage.

India started planning in 1987 because the 30 years were to be over in 1990. They prepared for Wullar barrage in 1987 and for Baglihar around 1996-97. It was completed in 2011-12. Kishanganga started in 2007-2008 and is still being planned and it is a problem as it is on the Neelum. They state it is their river, which we dispute since it is a tributary of the Jhelum, meeting at Muzaffarabad and will directly impact the inflows into our river rights. These design features are still under adjudication by the Arbitrator under IWT provisions, which Pakistani experts are pursuing vigorously.

Whatever they did was after 1990. The clauses said you can do hydro, you can do run-of-the river and you can do storage, but not more than what the clauses specify, which is why we objected to the design of Baglihar and Wullar. In Wullar barrage our position was held up. In Baglihar our contention was modified. India had actually offered in 2008-09 that they were willing to modify the design just enough to to maintain what is called the mean dead level.

You are allowed to keep a mean dead level of water otherwise the damn starts to silt up. But the PPP government at the time insisted on going to the international court. At the end of the day, even if there is a difference of say 1MAF, is it worth bad relations?

https://www.thefridaytimes.com/tft/can-india-really-threaten-pakistan-over-water/

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan Faces A Water #War With #India On The Horizon. Glaciers feeding Indus originate in India, which has implemented large-scale diversions of freshwater. India has even bigger plans for diversions. #IWT #Indus #Dams #DamsForPakistan #ClimateChange https://www.sciencefriday.com/articles/pakistan-faces-a-water-war-on-the-horizon/

Pakistan is one of the fastest-growing nations in the world. It had a population of 170 million in 2011. Five years later, that population crossed the 200 million mark. The country is grappling with the same sorts of growing pains that its neighbor, India, is experiencing.

But Pakistan has an extraordinary problem looming on the horizon: water scarcity, which has devastated other countries in the sub-tropics in the past decade, is now quite real. And a solution to the crisis is not entirely within the country’s control.

But here’s where it gets especially treacherous for Pakistan. Compounding the over-use and changes inflicted on the arid region from the Earth’s climate system, actions by India to cut off some of the flow of water feeding the Indus has created the potential for serious conflict between the two nations.

The glaciers that feed the Indus originate in India, which has implemented large-scale diversions of the freshwater as it cascades down from those glaciers. India has even bigger plans for diversions. This, not surprisingly, has created considerable tension with Pakistan.

“One of the potentially catastrophic consequences of the region’s fragile water balance is the effect on political tensions,” National Geographic reported.

“In India, competition for water has a history of provoking conflict between communities. In Pakistan, water shortages have triggered food and energy crises that ignited riots and protests in some cities. Most troubling, Islamabad’s diversions of water to upstream communities with ties to the government are inflaming sectarian loyalties and stoking unrest in the lower downstream region of Sindh.

“But the issue also threatens the fragile peace that holds between the nations of India and Pakistan, two nuclear-armed rivals. Water has long been seen as a core strategic interest in the dispute over the Kashmir region, home to the Indus’ headwaters,” it wrote. “Dwindling river flows will be harder to share as the populations in both countries grow and the per-capita water supply plummets.”

A bit of context is necessary here to understand how severe a problem this is right now for Pakistan—and how it can become catastrophic in the near future.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change—a definitive report on the causes and impacts of climate change globally compiled by thousands of scientists every four years—has signaled for nearly a decade now that dry regions of the world in the sub-tropics will continue to see less and less rainfall. Some of this is already occurring. The Horn of Africa (which includes Somalia, Yemen, and Kenya) falls squarely in the sub-tropics where decreased rainfall has a severe impact on already dry regions. India and Pakistan do as well. The overall effect of climate change is an intensification of the water cycle that causes more extreme floods and droughts globally. The sub-tropical regions of the world are ground zero for these impacts.

Riaz Haq said...

Glacier Watch: Indus Basin
BACKGROUNDERS - May 21, 2019
By Geopolitical Monitor

https://www.geopoliticalmonitor.com/glacier-watch-indus-basin/

The Indus Basin covers an area of around 1.1 million square kilometers, starting in the Hindu Kush, Karakorum, and Himalaya mountains before draining into the Arabian Sea in a vast 600,000-hectare delta. Upstream portions incorporate parts of China, Afghanistan, and India, while most of the downstream area falls within Pakistan. The system feeds the 3,000 km-long Indus River, which is the 8th longest in the world.

It’s hard to overstate the importance of the Indus Basin system to the 237 million people who live within it. The basin’s waters are essential for drinking, food security, and the health of local, fishing-based economies in Pakistan. Fish production (which is 63% marine and 37% inland) accounts for one of Pakistan’s top-10 exports. The health of these communities is an important and oft-unquantifiable consideration; their economic collapse generally leads to rapid urbanization, sectarian conflict, and popular upheaval against the state authorities.

Aquaculture is one economic standout, as the industry is one of the fastest growing in the world and it already contributes 1% of Pakistan’s GDP. Yet the industry is already in trouble: it’s growing at just 1.5% per year, far behind the rate in neighbors like India and Bangladesh, and some are even predicting the collapse of aquaculture in Pakistan within 20 years. At fault is years of unregulated overfishing, along with dam-building and climate change which are destroying species diversity. The problem is especially pronounced in the 600,000 hectares of mangrove forests in the Indus Delta. The unique mangrove ecosystem is ideal for shrimp farming, one of the most value-added fields of aquaculture. But the mangrove forests have been dying out as the Indus’ flow weakens; it’s estimated that some 86% of mangrove cover has been lost between 1966 and 2003 – and it’s likely that the trend has progressed since then.

Reduced flow along the Indus has allowed saltwater to slowly creep upstream, rendering previously arable land unusable and forcing locals to uproot and move in search of greener pastures. There’s some 33 million hectares of cultivated cropland within the basin, served by an irrigation system of 40,000 miles of canals and 90,000 watercourses, all drawing water from the Indus along with other rivers like the Jhelum, Chenab, Ravi, and Sutlej.

Agriculture is a major part of Pakistan’s economy: some 24 million people are engaged in cultivation – or 40% of the economically active population – and the sector accounted for 22% of Pakistan’s GDP in 2009. Agricultural products are also lucrative export goods for Pakistan – a country that is currently grappling with a severe balance of payments crisis. Food exports account for around 13% of Pakistan’s total exports, and are a rare case of year-on-year growth. Rice is of particular importance, representing 60% of Pakistan’s food exports. It is one of the main crops that’s cultivated in the Indus Basin, which, along with wheat and cotton, represent 77% of the total irrigated area. It is also an extremely water-hungry crop, making it reliant on heavy water extraction.

Riaz Haq said...

A farmer in Punjab is rejuvenating sand dunes though drip irrigation
Zofeen T. Ebrahim Updated June 01, 2019


https://www.dawn.com/news/1485906

For as long as Hasan Abdullah can remember the 50-acre sandy dune on his 400-acre farmland in Sadiqabad, Pakistan’s Punjab province, was an irritant – nothing grew on it.

His farmland lies beside the vast Cholistan desert in a canal irrigated area east of the Indus River in Rahim Yar Khan district. Abdullah inherited it in 2005, when his father passed away. Until then he had been working in information technology.

In 2015, after much research, Abdullah took a “calculated risk” of cultivating the “barren” dune using the drip irrigation system. The government’s announcement of a 60% subsidy on drip irrigation was “a big incentive,” he said. Agriculture, through wasteful flood irrigation, accounts for over 80% water usage in a country facing severe water shortages.

Today, Abdullah’s dune is a sight to behold: fruit orchards have flourished in the sand. He admitted that without drip irrigation the “dune would never have produced anything.

Water mixed with fertiliser is carried out through pipes with heads known as drippers, explained Abdullah, which release a certain amount of water per minute directly to the roots of each plant across the orchard.

And because watering is precise, there is no evaporation, no run off, and no wastage.

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The power of the drip
Using drip irrigation, farmers can save up to 95% of water and reduce fertiliser use, compared to surface irrigation, according to Malik Mohammad Akram, director general of the On Farm Water Management (OFWM) wing in the Punjab government’s agriculture department. In flood irrigation – the traditional method of agriculture in the region – a farmer uses 412,000 litres per acre, while using drip irrigation the same land can be irrigated with just 232,000 litres of water, he explained.

The water on Abdullah’s dune is pumped from a canal – which is part of the Indus Basin irrigation system – into a reservoir built on the land. “Being at the tail end [of the canal system], we needed to be assured the availability of water at all times and thus we had to construct a reservoir,” said Abdullah. For years now, farmers at the head of the canals have been “stealing” water causing much misery for farmers downstream.

Costly savings
But drip irrigation is expensive. Out of Abdullah’s 40 acres of orchards on drip irrigation, 30 acres are on sand dunes and ten acres are on land adjacent to the dune, locally known as “tibba” – a small sand dune surrounded by agricultural land. On the 30 acre-dune patch, Abdullah grows oranges on 18, feutral (another variety of orange) on another six acres, lemons on five acres and on one acre he has experimented with growing olives, which bore fruit this year.

In took three years of “micromanaging the orchards” before the orange and olive trees began fruiting last year. “We hope to break even this year and next year we should be in profit,” he said. It will take another four years to recoup all his investment, he calculated.

Abdullah was the first farmer to experiment with this new approach. Among many challenges that came his way was to get his farmhands to understand the new way of watering.

Akram has had a similar experience, “It is difficult for a traditional farmer to come to terms with it. Unless he sees the soaked soil with his eyes, he cannot believe the plant has been well watered.”

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“Ours is the only farm in Pakistan that has set up a drip irrigation system over such a huge tract – and in the desert too,” said Asif Riaz Taj, who manages Infiniti Agro and Livestock Farm. Now in their fourth year, the orchards have started fruiting over 70 acres. But it will not be before its sixth year, Taj said, that they will “break even”. The drip irrigation and solar plant was installed at a cost of PKR 25 million (USD 174,000), and the monthly running cost of this farm is almost PKR 4 million (USD 28,000).

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistani #Punjab government giving 60% subsidy to promote #drip #irrigation in #farming for conserving #water and getting higher crop yield. Also helps save fertilizer, time, labor. #Agriculture #Pakistan https://fp.brecorder.com/2019/06/20190601483027/

The Punjab government is providing 60 percent subsidy to the growers on promotion of latest irrigation techniques including drip irrigation in the province with an aim of conserving water and getting more yield. Director General Agriculture (Water Management) Malik Muhammad Akram said that latest irrigation techniques ensure availability of water and fertilizer in time to the plants and it also ensure uniform supply of these two major ingredients to all the plants in a field. It helps attaining more per acre yield with minimum agricultural inputs, he added.

He said that it also help saving fertilizer, time, labour and water by fifty per cent while a lot of water go waste in the traditional watering techniques. He said in this system water goes to plants' roots in shape of drops. This system is also very successful on uneven land or land in Potohar or desert areas. He said there is a need to attract farmers to drip irrigation system as it would help mitigate the negative impact of water shortage or impacts of climate change thus leading the country to self-reliance in food.

Riaz Haq said...

The Indus River System Authority (IRSA) Releases 287,100 Cusecs Water

https://www.urdupoint.com/en/pakistan/the-indus-river-system-authority-irsa-relea-660562.html

The Indus River System Authority (IRSA) Wednesday released 287,100 cusecs water from various rim stations with inflow of 314,200 cusecs.

According to the data released by IRSA, water level in the Indus River at Tarbela Dam was 1408.31 feet, which was 24.31 feet higher than its dead level of 1,386 feet.

Water inflow in the dam was recorded as 146,200 cusecs while outflow as 130,000 cusecs.

The water level in the Jhelum River at Mangla Dam was 1138.15 feet, which was 98.15 feet higher than its dead level of 1,040 feet whereas the inflow and outflow of water was recorded as 50,900 cusecs and 40,000 cusecs respectively.

The release of water at Kalabagh, Taunsa and Sukkur was recorded as 156,200, 152,900 and 40,500 cusecs respectively.

Similarly from the Kabul River, 63,500 cusecs of water was released at Nowshera and 22,800 cusecs from the Chenab River at Marala.

Riaz Haq said...

As water disappears, parched southern Pakistan farmers march north

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-pakistan-water-protests/as-water-disappears-parched-southern-pakistan-farmers-march-north-idUSKCN1U31YM

As shopkeeper Ali Akbar went to open his store last week along the main street of Thatta, in Pakistan’s Sindh province, he found himself wading through a sea of people who had blocked the road, causing an enormous traffic jam.

It wasn’t a political rally – the normal cause of such crowds. It was people without water.

“They were demanding the government declare a water emergency and resolve their woes on a war footing,” Akbar told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in a telephone call. “It was extremely hot, but they remained resolute.”

Over a week, the people had walked 140 km (85 miles) from the Indus delta region, desperate to find an answer to worsening water shortages and land losses to erosion in their home villages.

Zuhaib Ahmed Pirzada, a young environmental activist from Thatta, said an original 50 or so marchers from the area around Kharo Chan – where the delta meets the Arabian Sea - were joined by others as they marched north.

By the time the crowd reached Thatta, there were 1,500 marchers.

Tanzeela Qambrani, a legislator from Badin district, in southern Sindh province, said the region has seen the “slow death” of the delta for many years.

Water expert Simi Kamal, who works at the Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund and started a foundation focused on water and food security, said the spread of large-scale irrigation along the Indus River is partially to blame for less water reaching the delta.

But she said “mismanagement” of water, including wasteful flood irrigation and failure to leave enough water in systems to support nature, played a far bigger role.

“Together these have been catastrophic for the environment as well as the local population,” she said, predicting that a shifting climate would only make the problem worse.

LOWER FLOW
The Indus is a water lifeline for over 200 million Pakistanis, about 50 million of them near the river’s end in Sindh, according to the U.S.-Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Water and other agencies.


A report by environmental and development group Lead Pakistan said that as demands on the Indus’ water grow, the delta is receiving less than a third of the water it needs.

The flow is also less than what it is due under a 1991 water sharing accord among Sindh, Punjab, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces, the report said.

Khalid Hyder Memon, a former irrigation department official in the Sindh provincial government, said he felt Punjab province, upstream, was “stealing” water that should be Sindh’s share.

He said repeated protests and requests over the last two years for a water audit by an independent body had not yet been acted on by the Indus River System Authority, which monitors water distribution and sharing.

“An audit would establish how much water there is in the system and how much is released to each province,” said Memon, who worked on irrigation issues for 37 years.



But Usman Tanveer, deputy commissioner of Thatta, said recent shortages of water in Sindh were in part the result of cool June temperatures in Gilgit-Baltistan’s Skardu district, with less snowmelt coming from the foothills of the Karakoram mountains.

“It takes between 17 to 25 days for the water from Skardu to reach us. The unprecedented and persistent low temperatures delayed snow melt and created havoc for us,” he explained.

Qambrani said the Sindh government needs to show “seriousness” in dealing with growing water threats as climate pressures become the new normal, and as sea level rise and less water and sediment flowing down the Indus erodes delta land.

Riaz Haq said...

Restore Pakistan’s rivers, handle floods, droughts and climate change
Managing river systems can help Pakistan manage floods, deal with droughts, create engines for a green economy, as well as help mitigate greenhouse gas emissions more effectively and more cheaply than big dams, argue Hassan Abbas and Asghar Hussain

https://www.thethirdpole.net/en/2019/07/12/restore-pakistans-rivers-handle-floods-droughts-and-climate-change/

Management of riverine corridors and active flood plains is the key to managing large and frequent floods. What we need is to restore the capacities of riverine corridors to pass bigger floods, rehabilitate lost wetlands to absorb flood peaks, and regenerate forests in floodplains to break flood velocities and complement aquifer recharge. The estimated area of Pakistan’s riverine corridors and active floodplains is approximately 21,000 square kilometres as shown on the map. These areas are government-owned lands along 3,186 kilometres of the rivers with an average width of 6.6 kilometres. With proper management of wetlands and forests in this area, it could hold and recharge between 30 to 50 MAF of water during a flood.

No other engineering intervention can match this capacity, and the cost is much lower than building large dams. Additionally this would regenerate ecological services worth billions of dollars each year.

This approach will also help with the management of droughts. The riverbed and sand deposits within the areas shown on the map form freshwater aquifers of excellent quality. If we manage just the top 150 metres of these aquifers, they give us a storage potential of more than 380 MAF (in comparison the proposed Bhasha Dam is only 8 MAF, and the Mohmand dam less than 1 MAF). Compared to our current (wasteful) water demands of 104 MAF per year, this storage potential is enough to sustain us for more than 1,300 days. Our current storage through dams is only 30 days.

If we simultaneously start investing on both the water conveyance systems and on-farm practices to improve irrigation efficiency, current technologies can enable us to produce as much crops with less than 30 MAF. If we reach this potential, over 10-20 years, the aquifer storage of 380 MAF is enough to sustain us for 13 years.

In other words, managing aquifer recharge in the riverine corridor, combined with improved irrigation efficiencies, can literally make Pakistan secure in the event of the longest conceivable droughts.

Riaz Haq said...

Wapda secures ‘B-’ with stable outlook by rating agencies

https://www.dawn.com/news/1544852

The Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) has secured international credit rating of ‘B-’ with a stable outlook from international rating agencies, Fitch and Standard & Poor’s (S&P) -- a pre-requisite for green eurobond issuance that is a core point of the policy for foreign currency component of both Diamer Basha and Mohmand dam projects.

This was revealed in a letter written by the Wapda chairman to the federal water resources secretary on Friday.

Wapda had initiated the process to raise a portion of the requisite foreign currency financing from international market through issuance of green eurobond with a debut benchmark size of $500 million. The authority engaged three major credit rating agencies -- Fitch, S&P and Moody’s. JP Morgan and HBL provided financial advisory services for the process on pro-bono basis and meetings with these agencies were conducted on Feb 19 and 20 at Wapda House in Lahore.

“A great feat that Wapda has been equalised with the federal government on Long-Term Foreign Currency Issuer Default Rating of ‘B-’ with Stable Outlook by both Fitch and S&P Ratings. Moody’s are yet to communicate the outcome and we expect it to be in line with the other two agencies,” the letter stated.

During the meetings, the rating agencies were apprised of Wapda’s autonomous status, business model, financial profile and its importance in realising the government’s goal of minimising dependence on imported fuel for energy generation. This was followed by a rigorous exercise from credit quality perspective, including evaluation of financial position, financial forecasts, impact of socio-political factors, and the authority’s corporate governance and regulatory framework in order to gauge its strengths and quantify potential risks.

“The outcome of this credit rating exercise would greatly help to raise foreign financing at the best possible rates when Wapda approaches the international capital market for its Green Eurobond issuance. It will also bolster our credibility with a direct bearing on the pricing when we raise foreign financing from other avenues like Syndicate loans and Export Credit Agencies,” the letter added.

Wapda chief retired Lt General Muzammil Hussain told Dawn that the authority required $1.2 billion during the first two years of executing the Diamer Basha and Mohmand dam projects. “And now after getting this international rating… we will be able to secure foreign financing for the aforementioned mega projects. For this, we will be launching green eurobond, each of $500 million, in the international market soon. This way, the international donors will agree on fulfilment of the foreign currency component of these two projects,” he explained.

Pakistan had also recently secured the ‘B-’ rating with a stable outlook.

Riaz Haq said...

The changing world means changing spending patterns and living habits at home as well as abroad. Pakistan is now the world’s fastest-growing retail market, partly thanks to the fact that disposable income has doubled since 2010. The number of retail stores, which is forecast to rise by 50 per cent between 2017 and 2021, is also being driven by the two-thirds of the populace under the age of thirty—and by the changing attitude to money among the young, who want to enjoy a good lifestyle now rather than save to enjoy one later.

Frankopan, Peter. The New Silk Roads (pp. 14-15). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Water is also a problem in South Asia, where India’s construction of the Kishanganga dam and hydroelectric plant has been a source of great concern for the government of Pakistan, who argue that these projects violate the treaty of 1960 that split the water resources of the Indus River between Pakistan and India. Anxieties about the dam, which was formally opened in May 2018, have been heightened by proposals to build as many as twelve hydroelectric plants on the River Kabul in Afghanistan—which would put further pressure on the resources of cities like Karachi, whose population is growing at more than 5 per cent per year and whose water board is only able to supply 50 per cent of its needs as it is.43 Not surprisingly, the Kishanganga

Frankopan, Peter. The New Silk Roads (p. 37). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

dam has been referred to the International Court for Arbitration, and, perhaps equally unsurprisingly, the dispute has resulted in recriminations, soul-searching and suspicions of sabotage and conspiracy in the press in both India and Pakistan.44 Then there is the impact of climate change, which according to recent research will cause the Urumqi Glacier No. 1 to lose some 80 per cent of its ice volume in the next three decades—which will have obvious implications for Central Asia as well as for western China, where this and other glaciers play an important role in providing water for rivers but also as standby resources in times of drought.45

Frankopan, Peter. The New Silk Roads (p. 37). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Riaz Haq said...

Why Covering Canals With Solar Panels Is a Power Move
Covering waterways would, in a sense, make solar panels water-cooled, boosting their efficiency.

https://www.wired.com/story/why-covering-canals-with-solar-panels-is-a-power-move/


Scientists in California just ran the numbers on what would happen if their state slapped solar panels on 4,000 miles of its canals, including the major California Aqueduct, and the results point to a potentially beautiful partnership. Their feasibility study, published in the journal Nature Sustainability, finds that if applied statewide, the panels would save 63 billion gallons of water from evaporating each year. At the same time, solar panels across California’s exposed canals would provide 13 gigawatts of renewable power annually, about half of the new capacity the state needs to meet its decarbonization goals by the year 2030.

California’s water conveyance system is the world’s largest, serving 35 million people and 5.7 million acres of farmland. Seventy-five percent of available water is in the northern third of the state, while the bottom two-thirds of the state accounts for 80 percent of urban and agricultural demand. Shuttling all that water around requires pumps to make it flow uphill; accordingly, the water system is the state’s largest single consumer of electricity.

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Govt plans to install floating solar panels on dams
They will help reduce evaporation of water, generate clean electricity

https://tribune.com.pk/story/2110629/2-govt-plans-install-floating-solar-panels-dams

He (Minister Omar Ayub) announced that the government was planning to install floating solar panels on the country’s big water reservoirs and along canals in a bid to generate thousands of megawatts of clean energy.

This is part of the government’s plan to give priority to an increase in the share of renewable energy in the total energy mix.

He revealed that floating solar panels would be installed on Tarbela, Mangla, Ghazi Barotha and Khanpur reservoirs besides canals. “It will not only help to reduce evaporation of water but will also generate electricity,” the minister emphasised.

Speaking at a conference on “Water Crisis: An Imminent Danger to Pakistan’s Stability”, Khan warned India that Pakistan would swiftly retaliate if New Delhi violated the Indus Waters Treaty.

“If India tries to make the Indus Waters Treaty as a weapon, then answer from Pakistan will be swift as we will defend our sovereignty.”

He urged the international community to take notice of Indian atrocities in the occupied valley of Kashmir.

He was of the view that if proper investment was made in the water sector, especially in water storages, then it had the potential to take up the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth by one percentage point.

Despite its importance in economic growth, the minister decried, no work was carried out for the construction of dams after Tarbela and Mangla and no big dam was commissioned after 1960.

“Our government is actively working on a plan to harness the water resources in order to add 18,000-20,000 megawatts of hydroelectric power to the system,” he said. The minister pointed out that the current installed power generation capacity from all sources stood at 31,000MW, which would be enhanced to 55,000MW by 2030.

By the year 2025, around 8,000MW of renewable energy would be added to the system and 20,000MW would be added by 2030, he anticipated.

Riaz Haq said...

Renewable energy is the cornerstone of our future energy needs. In particular, solar energy is beingutilized at a faster pace than ever. Floating Solar Photovoltaics (FSPV) has recently gained traction as asuitable alternative of land-based large scale PV installation. It is a promising technology to utilize watersurfaces for placing solar plants. Not only it utilizes the water as real estate but it has several otheradvantages as well. For example, FSPV can use the existing transmission and distribution infrastructurethat is the part of hydroelectric power plants. In this paper, we evaluate an FSPV plant and its integrationwith the existing hydroelectric power station of a small reservoir in Pakistan. We have investigated the500 kV, 132 kV and 11 kV voltage levels for the integration of FSPV plant. Moreover, we have devised ahydro-solar optimization model for the ef´Čücient utilization of energy. The combined system consisting ofhydroelectric and 200 MWp FSPV produces more than 3.5% additional power overall when comparedwith production of only hydroelectric power. More importantly the FSPV generation coincides with thedaily mid-day peak load thus works as a peaker plant for the national grid

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/331808150_Integrating_Floating_Solar_PV_with_Hydroelectric_Power_Plant_Analysis_of_Ghazi_Barotha_Reservoir_in_Pakistan

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Integrating Floating Solar PV with Hydroelectric Power Plant:
Analysis of Ghazi Barotha Reservoir in Pakistan

Temperature function for a long-term district heat demand forecast

Introducing a Floating Solar PV plant in a huge hydroelectric dam reservoir can be a revolutionary step in the field
of renewable energy systems. Floating Solar PV, having a reasonable power generation potential, if implemented on
Ghazi Barotha dam reservoir, can play a vital role in sufficing the peak load demand encountered by Ghazi Barotha
hydroelectric power plant.
The Dam has two heads with a storage capacity sufficient for daily requirement of 4 hours peak demand. On
average three out of five generating units operate for normal load conditions, and according to WAPDA records[14],
on average individual unit produces around 150 MW. The storage capacity of hydroelectric reservoir is utilized when
demand is at peak and according to daily load curves we have two peaks in 24 hours a day. First peak is around 10:00
- 15:00 and the second is 19:00 - 22:00, in some cases we cannot provide our peak demand because the storage has
already been used in the previous peak hours, a solution of the problem of not having stored capacity for peak demand
is to add one more generating unit connected to a floating photovoltaic power source of 200 MW (which is the
estimated output of Ghazi Barotha Dam reservoir I & II, covering 20% of the total area) installed on the Dam reservoir,
during day we could meet our peak demand with FSPV and night peak with hydro power. Moreover, no new
infrastructure is required in terms of transmission line. The same transmission line can be used for the peak demand.
Adding a 200 MW at this site will solve our problem of peak demand in morning and such solar plant could save the
additional costs associated with installing solar power plant any place else i.e. transmission and distribution costs. It
is assumed that the base load demand is always catered by the power from the hydroelectric plant. Floating Solar PV
plant becomes a peak demand source during daytime

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan to get $1.3 billion #WorldBank loan for social safety net (#EhsaasKafaalat), #infrastructure & governance. Projects include 35 small rainwater-fed #groundwater recharge #dams in #Sindh: #Karachi, Jamshoro, Thatta, Dadu, & Tharparkar. #water
https://www.geo.tv/latest/341738-pakistan-strikes-13-billion-development-agreement-with-world-bank


Pakistan has reached an agreement with World Bank to work on seven projects worth $1.3 billion aimed at improving social protection, infrastructure, and governance, a statement from the Ministry of Economic Affairs said Friday.

Minister for Economic Affairs, Makhdum Khusro Bakhtyar witnessed the signing ceremony of seven project agreements at the Ministry of Economic Affairs.

"This financing will support the government’s initiatives in Social Protection, Disaster and Climate Risk Management, Improving Infrastructure for Resilience, Agriculture and Food Security, Human Capital Development and Governance Sectors," the statement said.

The agreement includes the Crisis-Resilient Social Protection Programme (CRISP) worth $600 million. The objective of the programme is to support the development of a more adaptive social protection system that will contribute to future crisis-resilience among poor and vulnerable households in the country.

"The programme is focused on the key initiatives being undertaken by Benazir Income Support Program (BISP) under the Ehaas Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programmes," the statement said.

The second project worth $200 million is the Locust Emergency and Food Security Project that will introduce a set of customised activities — such as conducting locust surveillance and controlling operations, rehabilitating livelihoods of affected rural communities and farmers — to effectively address the desert locust outbreak.

The third project worth $200 million is the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Human Capital Investment Project.

It aims to improve the availability, utilisation, and quality of primary healthcare services and elementary education services in four districts — Peshawar, Nowshera Haripur, and Swabi — of KP that have been hosting refugees.

The Sindh Resilience Project worth $200 Million — the fourth project — is to mitigate flood and drought risks in selected areas and strengthen Sindh’s capacity to manage natural disasters and public health emergencies.

"The project will support the establishment of the Sindh Emergency Service, including the development of six divisional headquarters operational facilities, provision of equipment, and training of personnel," it said.

It will also support the construction of 35 small rainwater-fed recharge dams in drought-prone regions of Sindh including Karachi, Jamshoro, Thatta, Dadu, and Nagarparker in Tharparkar districts.

The fifth project and sixth projects, Balochistan Livelihood and Entrepreneurship, and Balochistan Human Capital Investment Projects, worth $86 million aim to promote employment opportunities for rural communities; achieve sustainability of enterprises, and improve utilisation of quality health and education services in the province.

The final and seventh project, the Supporting Institutional Interventions for Management of Refugees Project, worth $50 million, aims to improve organisational and institutional capacity for managing refugees and host communities.

Secretary Ministry of Economic Affairs Noor Ahmed signed the financing agreements on behalf of the federal government, while representatives of Sindh, KP, and Balochistan signed their respective project agreements online.

World Bank's Country Director Najy Benhassine signed the agreements on behalf of the World Bank. The country director assured his institution's continuous financial and technical support to Pakistan in a bid to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth in the country.

Riaz Haq said...

Managing Groundwater Resources in Pakistan’s Indus Basin

https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/feature/2021/03/25/managing-groundwater-resources-in-pakistan-indus-basin

Highlights
Improved groundwater management is crucial for a healthy, wealthy, and green Pakistan. Pakistan’s Indus Basin Irrigation System is the largest artificial groundwater recharge system in the world, but the current water management paradigm doesn’t reflect it.
Over-abstraction, waterlogging and contamination threaten the crucial role of groundwater as a life-sustaining resource, which has cascading impacts on drought resilience, public health, and environmental sustainability.
For groundwater to remain a safe and reliable source of drinking water and a lifeline for tail-end farmers, a balance must be achieved between efficiency of the surface water system and sustainability of groundwater resources.


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In the past, these challenges were aggravated by an inadequate policy framework, lack of regulation and insufficient investments. Unregulated pumping has led to groundwater depletion and the drying up of wells in parts of Punjab. Excess irrigation in areas where groundwater levels are high is contributing to widespread waterlogging in Sindh. An increasing volume of unmanaged domestic and industrial wastewater is seeping into the ground, adding to the cocktail of contaminants affecting drinking water supplies. Inadequate data collection has inhibited the ability to adopt evidence-based policies to improve groundwater management.

Improving groundwater management, however, is integral to Pakistan’s economic development. According to the World Bank report Pakistan: Getting More from Water, without necessary reform and better demand management in the water sector, water scarcity will constrain Pakistan from reaching upper middle-income status by 2047.

In recent years, Pakistan has taken steps towards addressing modern groundwater challenges, starting with the National Water Policy 2018 which identified priorities for groundwater management. This was followed by the Punjab Water Policy in 2018 and the Punjab Water Act 2019. The policy emphasizes the need to curb groundwater over-abstraction and contamination, and the Act establishes a regime of licenses for abstraction and wastewater disposal, managed by newly created regulatory bodies.

Punjab is also developing a provincial Groundwater Management Plan. In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, a similar act was passed in 2020 while in Sindh, a draft Water Policy is underway to provide much needed direction for tackling waterlogging and salinity, and for conjunctive management of surface water and groundwater. The federal government is drafting a five-year National Groundwater Management Plan to provide a framework for coordinating groundwater stakeholders across Pakistan.

These are important first steps. Going forward, the challenge will be to implement and deepen these initial reforms to ensure the long-term sustainability of Pakistan’s vital groundwater resources.

Groundwater in Pakistan’s Indus Basin: Present and Future Prospects proposes a roadmap to improve groundwater management, focusing on four intervention areas: appointing a coordinating agency that is accountable for groundwater management across all sectors in each province; establishing a modern groundwater database; managing water resources conjunctively; and improving groundwater quality.

As the last 100 years have shown, the Indus Basin’s groundwater challenges are complex and varied and demand an adaptive management response. Recent reforms in parts of the basin provide a basis for a more ambitious groundwater agenda, including the calculation of water budgets, wider engagement of stakeholders, comprehensive monitoring of water balances to manage waterlogging and depletion, the identification of opportunities for managed aquifer recharge, and a more rigorous approach towards safeguarding water quality.

Riaz Haq said...

Storing floodwater to ensure availability for whole year

https://www.thenews.com.pk/print/855127-storing-floodwater-to-ensure-availability-for-whole-year

Islamabad : The government is likely to approve an ambitious plan to store floodwater in existing fifteen natural lakes linked with wetlands that would be a nature-based solution of its own kind in the country.

A high official of the climate change ministry told this correspondent that an international organization has recently submitted a report that stated that Pakistan stored only 9 percent of floodwater and the remaining amount went down to the Arabian Sea.

He said “The report pointed out that the melting of glaciers starts in the northern region and monsoon arrives from the southern region. All this happens within 100 days so the flow of water can be turned towards the natural lakes that are part of the wetland sites.”

The official said the natural lakes linked with wetlands can provide enough storage capacity and considerably ensure availability of water throughout the year.

He said there are one million tubewells in Pakistan due to which the level of underground water has reduced in last few decades, adding “The plan will also help recharge aquifer and raise the level of underground water. The whole country will benefit from this plan that is likely to be approved soon by the federal cabinet.”

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam has said the government is finding out nature-based solutions to the issue of water storage in the country. He said: “We have received a report from an international organization and it has shown us a path to store floodwater in existing natural lakes.”

These natural lakes are currently losing their water level so the plan would not only restore them to their original status but also help raise the level of groundwater in Pakistan, he said.

Riaz Haq said...

#California Has Some of #America’s Richest Farmland. But What Is It Without #Water? California farmers are selling their water for profits instead of growing crops amid severe #drought. #ClimateCrisis #Drought2021 https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/28/climate/california-drought-farming.html?smid=tw-share

n America’s fruit and nut basket, water is now the most precious crop of all.

It explains why, amid a historic drought parching much of the American West, a grower of premium sushi rice has concluded that it makes better business sense to sell the water he would have used to grow rice than to actually grow rice. Or why a melon farmer has left a third of his fields fallow. Or why a large landholder farther south is thinking of planting a solar array on his fields rather than the thirsty almonds that delivered steady profit for years.

“You want to sit there and say, ‘We want to monetize the water?’ No, we don’t,” said Seth Fiack, a rice grower here in Ordbend, on the banks of the Sacramento River, who this year sowed virtually no rice and instead sold his unused water for desperate farmers farther south. “It’s not what we prefer to do, but it’s what we kind of need to, have to.”

These are among the signs of a huge transformation up and down California’s Central Valley, the country’s most lucrative agricultural belt, as it confronts both an exceptional drought and the consequences of years of pumping far too much water out of its aquifers. Across the state, reservoir levels are dropping and electric grids are at risk if hydroelectric dams don’t get enough water to produce power.

Climate change is supercharging the scarcity. Rising temperatures dry out the soil, which in turn can worsen heat waves. This week, temperatures in parts of California and the Pacific Northwest have been shattering records.

By 2040, the San Joaquin Valley is projected to lose at least 535,000 acres of agricultural production. That’s more than a tenth of the area farmed.

And if the drought perseveres and no new water can be found, nearly double that amount of land is projected to go idle, with potentially dire consequences for the nation’s food supply. California’s $50 billion agricultural sector supplies two-thirds of the country’s fruits and nuts and more than a third of America’s vegetables — the tomatoes, pistachios, grapes and strawberries that line grocery store shelves from coast to coast.

Glimpses of that future are evident now. Vast stretches of land are fallow because there’s no water. New calculations are being made about what crops to grow, how much, where. Millions of dollars are being spent on replenishing the aquifer that has been depleted for so long.

Riaz Haq said...

Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) is executing the biggest-ever portfolio of development projects in Pakistan including Diamer Basha Dam, Dasu Hydropower Project and Mohmand Dam worth $26 billion after a span of almost five decades by adopting an innovative financing strategy on the back of a robust capital structure and strong balance sheet footing.

https://nation.com.pk/11-Nov-2021/wapda-executing-projects-worth-dollar-26-billion-says-chairman


WAPDA Chairman Lt Gen Muzammil Hussain (retd) highlighted this in the meeting with a delegation of JP Morgan comprising senior representatives namely Asif Raza, Managing Director Global Corporate Bank CEEMEA, Imran Zaidi, Managing Director Global Corporate Bank covering Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Amin M Khawaja, Chief Executive Officer Pakistan. WAPDA Member (Finance) Naveed Asghar was also present on the occasion.

Giving a run-down of 10 under construction WAPDA projects, the chairman said that these projects would enhance water storage capacity by more than 11 MAF and add another 9,000 MW of hydel electricity to the system. WAPDA has unparalleled institutional capacity to identify and implement multipurpose hydropower projects. It has adopted a multi-pronged strategy including Green Eurobonds and Syndicate loans etc for implementation of its projects. This was a radical shift from entire reliance on the Government of Pakistan. WAPDA’s business model has an important role to play in the development of a sustainable and lower-carbon economy in Pakistan, he said. The chairman said that WAPDA would continue to approach the international financial and capital market in a staggered mode, to minimise financing cost, in line with its financing requirements and would look forward to bring further investments in the hydropower sector which would go a long way to reduce carbon footprint in the power generation sector of Pakistan. He appreciated the role played by JP Morgan as the lead arranger for WAPDA’s debut Green Eurobond issuance alongside Deutsche, Standard Chartered and HBL Bank.

Riaz Haq said...

Alishba Farrukh ⚯͛
@bubblesays
Pakistan has the world's fourth-highest rate of water use. Its water intensity rate — the amount of water, in cubic meters, used per unit of GDP — is the world's highest. This suggests that no country's economy is more water-intensive than Pakistan's. 1/n

https://twitter.com/bubblesays/status/1522195266933305345?s=20&t=YJvQFn8WZuSTKbNkcPfGcA

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Alishba Farrukh ⚯͛
@bubblesays
·
6h
Replying to
@bubblesays
According to the IMF, Pakistan's per capita annual water availability is 1,017 cubic meters — perilously close to the scarcity threshold of 1,000 cubic meters. Back in 2009, Pakistan's water availability was about 1,500 cubic meters.2/n

https://twitter.com/bubblesays/status/1522195653241319425?s=20&t=YJvQFn8WZuSTKbNkcPfGcA


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Alishba Farrukh ⚯͛
@bubblesays
Pakistan is approaching the scarcity threshold for water. What is even more disturbing is that groundwater supplies are being rapidly depleted. And worst of all is that the authorities have given no indication that they plan to do anything about any of this. 3/n

https://twitter.com/bubblesays/status/1522198066169798659?s=20&t=YJvQFn8WZuSTKbNkcPfGcA

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Alishba Farrukh ⚯͛
@bubblesays
Pakistan may face a water shortage of 22-30% for six months starting from April 1 to September 30 during the Kharif season 2022.


https://twitter.com/bubblesays/status/1522198262043877378?s=20&t=YJvQFn8WZuSTKbNkcPfGcA


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Alishba Farrukh ⚯͛
@bubblesays
In 2025 Pakistan may face an acute water crisis. To avoid this outcome Islamabad must work dedicatedly on National Water Security, and plantation dives to protect and conserve natural climate. The problem is not due to water availability but the mismanagement of water

Riaz Haq said...

Balochistan water storage increases

https://tribune.com.pk/story/2351918/balochistan-water-storage-increases

The water storage capacity of Balochistan has reached 68,939 acre feet which will enhance the irrigation network and address water scarcity issues of the drought-hit province.

Under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP), as many as 27 dams have been completed having storage capacity of 68,939 acre feet in various districts of Balochistan.

There are also ongoing small, medium, large and delayed action dams at various stages of implementation that will further add another 9.016 million acre feet (MAF) to the existing storage capacity.

After the construction of large reservoirs in the country, the storage capacity of water will increase several million-acre feet that will help store rain and floods water during monsoon.

An official of the Ministry of Water and Power told APP that the work was underway on various projects in Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh to address the growing issue of water scarcity.

“The federal government is also providing funds for construction of various small, medium, large, and delay action and recharge dam projects in the country through Federal Public Sector Development Program (PSDP)”, he said.

These projects aimed at providing water for irrigation, agriculture, and drinking purposes which were being implemented by WAPDA and Irrigation Departments of four provinces besides the Public Health Engineering Department, Balochistan.

At present combined storage capacity of Mangla, Tarbela, and Chashma reservoirs is about 14.349 MAF. After the completion of ongoing projects i.e. Mohmand, Diamer Basha, and Nai Gaj Dams, the gross storage capacity will be increased to 23.988 MAF.

Riaz Haq said...

Interview: At the root of Pakistan’s water crisis is mismanagement of resources
Development sector professional Umer Karim talks about the energy and water crisis looming over the country.
Farahnaz Zahidi

https://scroll.in/article/1026969/interview-at-the-root-of-pakistans-water-crisis-is-mismanagement-of-resources


More than 80% of the population in Pakistan faces severe water scarcity. Without change, this is projected to increase. With the water crisis looming over the country, Umer Karim, a development sector professional, sat down with The Third Pole.

Karim has been working in the field of irrigation and water management for more than 20 years and is a consultant with public and private sector organisations, as well as a regular guest speaker and media commentator.

Can you explain the debate around dams in Pakistan?
In 2010, all the provinces had a consensus on the Diamer Bhasha dam [a dam being built in northwest Pakistan, which will be one of the highest in the world when finished]. However, now the project is taking a lot of flak. It is difficult to understand why they signed the agreement if it is now believed that we will suffer and dry up as a result.

Some people propose that small dams should be built in provinces. Please invite them to visit Chotiari reservoir, a small dam built on the Nara Canal in Sindh in 1996. No doubt it is very helpful and caters to the needs of downstream areas of Umerkot and Tharparkar whenever there is a shortage of water.

But people living near the banks of this dam are badly affected by waterlogging, salinity and land degradation. Small dams may be valuable in sustaining communities, but they need proper operation and maintenance plus remedial measures for waterlogging and seepage.

Usually, dams are built in areas where issues of waterlogging and salinity are expected to have the least impact. Tarbela dam, for example, recharges the area’s water tables and keeps them fresh.

Among people interested in the environmental pros and cons of hydropower, there are plenty of discussions, but technical or scientific research or data is not included. The narrative around hydros, therefore, remains superficial.

This year, we did not have water [stored in] dams. Tarbela was emptied for repair work on its tunnels during the dry – winter – period, and Mangla had to provide support for those areas in Pakistan’s upper reaches. We are essentially on a direct natural flow of the river, which remained lower than average due to low temperatures at glaciers, and this created multiple problems, especially for lower riparian areas.

Ahmed said...

Pakistan must learn from Isreal how to conserve water . Isrealis have shown the world that how this basic necessity of life called water could be conserved .

Do you know that most of the kitchens and bathrooms in the houses of Isreal have washbasins and the sink of those washbasins have pipelines those pipelines don’t actually connect to the waste areas like in Pakistan and other countries but those pipes of sinks of washbasins in the kitchens and bathrooms of Isreali houses actually are linked with agricultural areas of Isreal . When people in the houses of Isreal use water in washbasins of bathrooms and kitchens , the water which enters the pipelines through sinks of washbasins actually go directly to filter plants where they are filtered or recycled and then that water after recycling and filtering is either returned to the main reserves or dams of Isreal from where it is supplied back to the houses in Isreal or some of that water goes directly to agricultural areas of Isreal .

Isreal is the only country in the world which conserves most of the water through recycling . In Isreal out of 100% of the total water , 80% of the water is recycled successfully . Even in countries like UK and America , this much water is not recycled .

Riaz Haq said...

Saudi Arabia signs $240m loan agreement to support Mohmand Dam

https://www.dawn.com/news/1746406/saudi-arabia-signs-240m-loan-agreement-to-support-mohmand-dam

The statement noted that the project is expected to enhance water and food security, and improve the standard of living for people in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where almost 80 per cent of the population resides in rural areas, boosting the region’s socioeconomic development by creating employment opportunities and reducing poverty levels.

It added that by using renewable energy sources, the project will generate 800 MW of electricity production capacity, contributing to Pakistan’s energy security. In addition, the storage of 1.6 million cubic meters of water will support sustainable agricultural practices, enable irrigation of 6,773 hectares of new land, and increase the total cropping area from 1,517 hectares to 9,227 hectares in the province, facilitating agricultural activities.

Co-financed by the SFD, OPEC, Islamic Development Bank, and the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, the project aligns with SDG-2 (Food Security), SDG-6 (Clean Water), and SDG-7 (Clean Energy) and embodies SDG-17 (Partnerships for the Goals).

During the agreement signing ceremony, the CEO of SFD said this initiative is an extension of the fund’s continued support for development projects and programmes in Pakistan since its inception. He also highlighted the significance of joint cooperation between development funds, as evidenced by this project.

For his part, Dr Niaz expressed his sincere appreciation and gratitude to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for its unwavering support towards the development sector in Pakistan through the SFD.

Riaz Haq said...

Shrinking Indus Delta attracts UN’s attention

https://www.brecorder.com/news/40236204

The shrinking delta of Mighty River Indus of Pakistan has emerged on the United Nations radar after it accepted to create a global convention on all deltas of the world to ensure its protection against rising climate change impacts casting serious impact on its nature and habitat.

The development occurred after a strong international civil society nexus of experts, academicians, policy makers and stakeholders unanimously raised their voice for an international UN Convention for the Conservation River Delta (UN-CCRD) on the sequel of its UN Human Rights Declaration, UN Geneva Pact and many others to ensure that all the major deltas of the world were dying due to adverse impacts of climate change and environmental degradation namely sea intrusion, sea level rise, droughts, depleting water flows, shrinking creeks and others.

The African Centre for Climate Actions and Rural Development Initiative (ACCARD) in collaboration with the Nigeria’s Bayelsa State Government, the Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security at the University of Vermont, the Consortium for Capacity Building at the University of Colorado, Transboundary Water In-Cooperation Network (TWIN), Water Environment Forum-Pakistan, Center for the Advancement of Public Action (CAPA) Bennington College; Vietnam National University, Hanoi, Vietnam and Center for Environment and Sustainable Livelihood Projects (CESLP), among others hosted a side event at the UN Water conference titled “Integrative Highland to Ocean (H2O) Action for Disappearing Deltas: Towards a UN Convention on Conserving River Deltas.

Former Senator and federal minister for information and broadcasting and Chairman World Environment Forum, a civil society organization working to protect water resources and environment participated virtually to represent Pakistan in the sideline event whereas Freeman Elohor Oluowo of ACCARD and Prof. Dr. Asim Zia, Director, Institute for Environmental Diplomacy, Vermont physically participated in the session.

The global convention would help in achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be achieved by 2030 namely SDG-6 demanding “Clean Water”, SDG-13 “Climate Action”, and SDG-14 “Conserving and sustainably using the oceans, seas and marine resources”.

The announcement has came after successful campaign of the above mentioned coalition of non-governmental and civil society organizations who started the drive for a global convention of UN to protect deltas.

The speakers, and experts discussed deltas starting from Nigerian Niger Delta, Indus Delta of Pakistan, Mekong River, Colorado, Nile and St. Lawrence transboundary river basins.

Each of these deltas possessed varying risks owing to spiking up sea level rise and salt water intrusion from the oceans, and rapidly melting glaciers, increasing dams and shifting rainfall patterns in the highlands.

The UN had accepted that all the world deltas were under threat and sea level rise and intrusion was causing damage to soil and water ecosystems. It is not only nature but rather the communities, the livelihood opportunities and human lives that were diminishing and demanded the world to respond for their protection.

There will be various activities in Delta countries towards achieving the UN Convention for the Conservation River Delta.

Riaz Haq said...

Hague court rejects #India objections over #water row with #Pakistan. “In a unanimous decision, which is binding on the Parties & without appeal, the Court rejected each of the objections raised by India and determined that the Court is competent to consider and determine the disputes set forth in Pakistan’s Request for Arbitration” https://aje.io/e4ujxm via @AJEnglish

Permanent Court of Arbitration rejects India’s objections to a Pakistan-initiated procedure over water use in the Indus River basin.

The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in The Hague has rejected India’s objections to a Pakistan-initiated procedure over water use in the Indus River basin, reopening a procedure that had been blocked for many years.

India called the arbitration proceeding illegal as a neutral expert was also looking at the issue and the World Bank-brokered treaty prohibits parallel proceedings, the Reuters news agency reported on Thursday.

The South Asian neighbours have been arguing over hydroelectric projects on the shared Indus River and its tributaries for decades, with Pakistan complaining that India’s planned hydropower dams in upstream areas will cut flows on the river which feeds 80 percent of its irrigated agriculture.

To resolve the dispute, Pakistan sought resolution through PCA arbitration proceedings in 2016, prompting India to request that the World Bank appoint a neutral expert under the terms of the treaty. India has boycotted The Hague court proceedings and questioned the competence of the court.

“In a unanimous decision, which is binding on the Parties and without appeal, the Court rejected each of the objections raised by India and determined that the Court is competent to consider and determine the disputes set forth in Pakistan’s Request for Arbitration,” the court said in a statement on Thursday.

It gave no details on when and how the case will continue, but added that it will address the interpretation and application of the bilateral Indus Water Treaty, notably the provisions on hydroelectric projects, as well as the legal effect of past decisions of dispute resolution bodies under the treaty.

A spokesman for India’s foreign ministry, Arindam Bagchi, said India’s “consistent and principled position has been that the constitution of this so-called court of arbitration is in contravention of the clear letter and spirit of the Indus Water Treaty”.

He said India was participating in the proceedings of the neutral expert, which he called “the only treaty-consistent proceedings at this juncture”.

“Legal sophistry” will not compel India to participate in the proceedings of the PCA, Bagchi said.

India says the construction of its Kishanganga and Ratle Hydro Electric projects is allowed by the treaty.

Pakistan’s Foreign Office said it remained fully committed to the implementation of the Indus Water Treaty and its settlement mechanism, which it termed a “foundational agreement” between the two countries.

“We hope that India would also implement the Treaty in good faith,” Foreign Office spokeswoman Mumtaz Zahra Baloch said in a statement on Thursday night.

Riaz Haq said...

SenatorSherryRehman
@sherryrehman
Good news for Pakistan! Our Recharge Pakistan project, which will be implemented over the next 7 years, has been approved today for funding of 77.8 M USD. These include GCF resources of 66 M USD and co-financing of around USD 11.8 M. This adaptation project aims to initiate ecosystem-based adaptation (EBA) interventions that will store flood water in wetlands, floodplains and depressions (green infrastructure) at several priority sites, build community resilience at these sites, and enable the Government of Pakistan, including all lead provinces and stakeholders to implement & replicate such nature-based solutions for climate resilience.

https://twitter.com/sherryrehman/status/1678625444176822275?s=20

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Funding of $77.8 million has been approved for Recharge Pakistan, a project that aims to build the country’s climate resilience and water security, Federal Minister for Climate Change Sherry Rehman announced on Tuesday.

https://www.brecorder.com/news/40252003/778mn-funding-secured-for-recharge-pakistan-project-sherry-rehman

“Good news for Pakistan! Our Recharge Pakistan project, which will be implemented over the next seven years, has been approved today for funding of $77.8mn,” said Rehman in a post on Twitter.

The minister highlighted that the funding includes $66 million from Green Climate Fund (GCF) resources and co-financing of around $11.8 million.

GCF was established in 2010 by 194 countries party to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. It is designed as an operating entity of the Convention’s financial mechanism and is headquartered in South Korea.

“This adaptation project aims to initiate ecosystem-based adaptation interventions that will store flood water in wetlands, floodplains and depressions (green infrastructure) at several priority sites,” said Rehman.

Recharge Pakistan is a joint collaboration by GCF, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the Government of Pakistan. As per information available on the WWF website, the project aims to build Pakistan’s climate resilience and water security through cost-effective ecosystem-based adaptation.

“The project will increase water storage and recharge through wetlands, floodplains, and hill-torrents management; promote climate-adapted community-based natural resource management and livelihoods; and forge a paradigm shift to scale up this approach,” read the website.

Last week, Rehman during a high-level meeting with a delegation led by Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, President-designate of COP28 and UAE’s Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, said a “critical gap” in resources for adaptation and mitigation has been identified by multilateral agencies -amounting to $348 billion or 10.7% of cumulative GDP by 2030.

Despite this, Pakistan is committed to a green energy transition, whereby it will transfer 60% of its energy needs to renewables by 2030 and reduce its projected emissions by 50% until 2030, Rehman said.

Pakistan is actively involved in transitioning the country towards the renewable energy sector and is seeking partnerships in the alternative and renewable energy sector, the minister added.

Riaz Haq said...

The gates of Sulemanki Headworks were opened, closing them could have worsened the situation in Punjab. Pakistan Friendly Hand; Punjab Under Flood Condition | Pak Open Sulemanki head Works India Pakistan Border


https://india.postsen.com/local/806198.html

Sulemani Headworks built on Sutlej River in Pakistan.

Pakistan has extended a hand of friendship amidst the flood situation in India. The country which used to close the gates of its headworks and dams in the event of floods in Punjab, has opened the gates of Sulemanki headworks this year. This step taken by Pakistan has brought a big relief. In the past, 1.92 lakh cusecs of water reached the neighboring country from Hussainiwala.


In the last 6 days, floods have caused a lot of destruction in Punjab. While the situation has worsened in the eastern case, it is now being felt in western Malwa as well due to the release of water from the Harike headworks. Initially Pakistan had closed its gates of Sulemanki Headworks near Fazilka, but now water is flowing smoothly into Pakistani territory.

Water level in Harike crossed 2.14 lakh cusecs
With this step taken by Pakistan, the major threat of flood in Fazilka has been averted for the time being. In the past, 2.14 lakh cusecs of water was seen flowing in Harike of Sutlej. At the same time, the flow of water near Hussainiwala was recorded at 1.92 lakh cusecs, which is flowing towards Pakistan.