Seminar on ‘Water Conservation Methods’ at PIDE Nisar Memon links water conservation to security, sovereignty of Pakistan

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Zubair Qureshi

Former Information Minister, ex-Senator and Chairman of “Water Environment Forum” Nisar A Memon on Tuesday urged the nation, the young and the old alike, to move forward and adopt as well as implement stringent measures of water conservation.
“Water conservation is something we need to adopt and raise awareness about in society as it is directly linked with Pakistan’s security and sovereignty,” said the former minister.
Nisar Memon was giving his closing remarks at a one-day seminar on “Water Conservation Methods” organized at the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE).
The seminar was organized by PIDE in collaboration with The Asia Foundation, Prime Minister’s Inspection Commission and Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR).
Former Chairman WAPDA Shamsul Mulk, President Progressive Consulting Engineers, Engr Naeem Qureshi, Director Programmes, The Asia Foundation, Farid Alam, Senior Water Expert Ms Zaigham Habib, former Secretary Climate Change Ministry and Member of PM Inspection Commission, Syed Abu Ahmad Akif, Chairman PCRWR Dr Muhammad Ashraf and Director Centre for Environmental Economics & Climate Change Ghulam Samad also spoke on the occasion and highlighted the need for water conservation both at individual and the collective levels.
Nisar A Memon in a passionate address appealed to the Pakistani nation to make solemn pledge that they will conserve water and check its leakage/wastage at micro as well as macro level so that this vital source of life and energy could be conserved for our generations to come.
“Let’s launch Pakistan Water Conservation Campaign and be an organic part of it,” said Memon. Pakistan’s leaders, he said have failed the nation and the country is now at the brink of water crisis.
While agreeing to Ms Zaigham Habib’s point on “Water Accounting” Nisar Memon said besides water accounting there should also be water auditing and water accountability. Let’s charge the use [of water] and scandalize the misuse, he said.
He gave example of a number of botched projects that didn’t see the light of the day in the past but cost the nation millions and billions of rupees.
Cogen Plant in Karachi was one such project that was initiated in Musharraf government with a lot of trumpeting but later it was found the equipment used there was outdated and its owner failed to start full-fledged operations and the lenders are demanding their money back. The project could not run beyond seven days.
The story of Cogen is one of the glaring failure stories of Karachi civic infrastructure schemes, said Memon and urged the government to execute only those projects that are environment friendly and workable.
In February 2008, General (R) Pervez Musharraf inaugurated a first of its kind Co-Generation (Cogen) project at the southern tip of the DHA Phase VIII for desalinating seawater and producing electricity. However, due to some ‘technical faults’ this plant could not be run and ultimately it was shut down in 2010.
Engr Naeem Qureshi in his presentation told 50pc of water is being wasted in Karachi while in our neighbouring India, New Delhi added 20 million gallons of water to its stock by using efficient water conservation methods.

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