Water scarcity a big threat to Pakistan
KARACHI: The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Sunday said water scarcity is emerging as a grave threat to the survival of the country but policymakers seems to be unconcerned.
Pakistan is facing an acute water shortage and may hit masses, agriculture and industry soon, it said. In last few years the defence budget has been significantly increased to combat terrorism ignoring the fact that water scarcity could be a bigger menace than terrorism, said Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President PEW.
In a statement, he said that our country touched the “water stress line” in 1990 and crossed the “water scarcity line” in 2005 but it was not enough to draw attention of the policymakers. Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that if steps were not taken to combat the situation country is likely to face drought-like situation in the near future.
It is alarming that our capacity to preserve water has shrunk over the years. We haven’t built new dams since the 1960s, and the capacity of existing ones to store water is decreasing, he said. Pakistan has the world’s fourth highest rate of water use while its water intensity rate in cubic meters, used per unit of GDP is the worlds highest. This suggests that no country’s economy is more water-intensive than Pakistan’s.
According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Pakistan is already the third most water-stressed country in the world. He said that Government should immediate additional funds to overcome water scarcity, try to bring all people on one page for the construction of mega dams and stop India from using water as a weapon against Pakistan.