Depletion of Water Resoures in Pakistan 2000

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Depletion of Water Resoures in Pakistan 2000
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  DEPLETION OF WATER RESOURCES IN PAKISTAN Dr. Mirza Arshad Ali BegFormer Director General PCSIR 136C Ra!ahe Aam "o#sing Societ$% Malir "alt% &arachi'()1*+he sit#ation o! ,ater reso#rces in Pa-istan is grae to sa$ the least. /hile the riers are still r#nning !#ll in Bangladesh and eastern India% the 0arts o! the s#continent that ,ere isited $ !loods in Se0temer% those in Pa-istan had the same !lo, in Se0temer as osered normall$ d#ring 2oemer. "o,eer% Pa-istan is not the onl$ co#ntr$ o! the region !aced ,ith a gloom$ o#tloo-. +his is a time ,hen re0orts on crisis in aailailit$ o! ,ater are 0o#ring in !rom arid regions all oer the ,orld. Deserts hae e0anded in China% Iran and Pa-istan and hae in doing so etended the heat zone !rom Iran to Central India and !rom a little oer the north o! the Araian Sea coast to Gilgit in the  2orthern areas% ,hile d#st storms are o! common occ#rrence. 4#ite in contrast to this  0osition% the eastern region o! So#th Asia that incl#des Bangladesh and the eastern  0roinces o! India% iz. Assam and Bengal% is !aced ,ith seere !loods. Rec#rrent !ail#re o! the monsoon s$stem has ecome a reg#lar !eat#re in Pa-istan !or the  0ast !ie $ears. 5ac- o! ade#ate s#r!ace !lo, has res#lted in the dr$ing #0 o! riers% la-es and reseroirs s#ch as "# Dam% and de0letion o! a#i!ers in the ,aterstared regions all oer the co#ntr$% and there is no ho0e o! recharge in the o!!ing. +he monsoon s$stem !ails to reach the north,est and ,estern ends o! its c$cle. It is !#ll$ o0erational on so#thern% eastern% and central regions o! its c$cle% ,hich incl#des India and Bangladesh  #t loses its intensit$ ,hile still on its ,a$ to the ,estern and north,estern regions that incl#de Pa-istan. +his $ear it started receding in 2e0al in A#g#st ,hile there ,as hea$ do,n0o#r in Se0temer in /est Bengal ,hich !looded etensie areas and a!!ected 1' million 0eo0le there% incl#ding the lo, l$ing areas o! Calc#tta% Pa-istan receied onl$ scattered sho,ers !rom the same s$stem% ,ith Islamaad getting )) mm rains. De0art#re !rom Past +rend Pa-istan receies its 17*    cm or 18( MAF o! s#r!ace !lo, !rom sno, and glacier melt and !rom the monsoon s$stem as the main constit#ents o! its ,ater #dget. +he &ailas range holds -e$ to the s#00l$ o! ,ater to t,o main rier s$stems iz. the Ind#s that drains its ,ater to the ,est and so#th,est% and the Brahama0#tra% ,hich !lo,s east and then ia Assam to the Ba$ o! Bengal. It is interesting that oth the riers rise !rom 5a-e Mansaro,ar. +he glacial and sno,melt in the #00er Ind#s catchment area are the so#rce o! 7*9 !lo, d#ring the s#mmer. +here is onl$ minor ariation in the timing and ol#me o! ann#al !lo, o! sno,melt. :( cm or 789 o! the total mean !lo, meas#red !or the Ind#s at &alaagh ta-es 0lace et,een A0ril and Se0temer. +here are t,o !lood !lo,s in the Ind#s rier s$stem; one d#e to the earl$ rains in mid<#l$ ,hen the sno,melt contri#tes its share and the other in midA#g#st ,hen it is mostl$ d#e to 0reci0itation.+he 0attern o! ,ater !lo, d#e to sno,melt% ,hich rings the !irst !lood!lo, in the Ind#s and <hel#m ,as not !ollo,ed d#ring the last t,o $ears. +he Ind#s did not receie the  !lo, ol#me as in the 0ast% ,hile the east,ard !lo,ing Braham0#tra did. &a#l rier alone s#00lied the sno,melt to the #00er reaches o! Ind#s. +he inade#ac$ o! sno,melt in the Ind#s s$stem did not raise the in!lo, at +arela or Mangla till midA0ril and een on A0ril 1' this $ear it ,as a mere )*%1** c#secs at the !ormer and )6%3** c#secs at the latter dam. +he lo, !lo, that contin#ed till 0ast the !irst ,ee- o! Ma$ )*** has een attri#ted to lo,er rain!all d#ring the 0receding !ie months. A similar sit#ation ,as !aced in 1::8 and 1::'. It is #ite li-el$ that the degradation o! ecos$stem o! glaciers that had set in 1::8 ,as not criticall$ eamined altho#gh it had ,orsened eer since.Preci0itation on the east o! 5a-e Mansaro,ar% the catchment area !or the Braham0#tra ,as hea$ and either the ,inds slac-ened so as not to reach the catchment area o! the Ind#s on the ,est or there ,as not eno#gh moist#re in the clo#ds or sno, coer le!t to contri#te to the !lo,. Condensation and hea$ 0reci0itation oer east o! Mansaro,ar la-e 0roided hea$ !lo, to Braham0#tra #t not to Ind#s ,hich is on the ,est o! the la-e. /ater !lo, on Se0temer 8% )*** ,as 78%(** c#secs at G#dd# arrage% 6*%:'3 c#secs at S#--#r arrage and )3%*** c#secs at &otri arrage% as against 1* times the !lo, osered d#ring a normal $ear. At S#--#r arrage the !lo, ol#me had to e decreased  $ #0 to 1*** c#secs% ,hich res#lted in decrease in in!lo, and in the ,ater leel in !o#r canals and in red#ced !lo, do,nstream &otri.=ariations hae een recorded in the magnit#de and intensit$ o! heat ,ae% in e0ansion o! heat zone to northern areas res#lting !rom etensie deserti!ication ca#sed $ remoal o! egetatie coer and land erosion% red#ction in !lo, ol#me o! riers d#e to sno,melt% and in occ#rrence o! rains and !loods d#ring the last !ie $ears. >tensie areas in the north and so#th are re0ortedl$ eing a!!ected $ heat ,ae and the heat zone is no longer limited to Balochistan% Sindh and Ra?asthan #t etends to Iran on the ,est and to the  2orthern Areas o! Pa-istan. Foc#s o! heat zone etends along 2o-#ndiSii<acoaad ais to Mian,ali. +he osered de0art#re !rom normal ma$ not e #n#s#al #t is so  0ersistent in rec#rrence as to s#ggest alteration in monsoon 0attern or modi!ication d#e to etensie de!orestation and deserti!ication as mani!ested $ the intensit$ o! heat ,ae. Preci0itations and rier !lo, hae ecome erratic since the earl$ 1::*s. 1::) ,as erratic in eing too ,et and 1::3 in eing dr$. +herea!ter there ,as lo,er or dela$ed  0reci0itation oer the ,estern segment o! the monsoon c$cle. Im0act o! change ecame a00arent a!ter the ,et $ear o! 1::' ,hen there ,as elo, normal rain!all !rom <#l$ to A#g#st )* o! the $ear 1::7. +he rain!all therea!ter ,as hea$ and !loods 0la$ed haoc. +here ,as elo, normal rain!all in 1::: ,hile that receied !rom the north,esterl$ s$stem in the northern areas ,ere slightl$ aoe normal in <#l$ )***% #t ,ell elo, normal d#ring A#g#st and er$ little in Se0temer. 5ahore recorded aoe normal rains o! 3):.: mm at air0ort d#ring <#l$ )*** against the aerage o! )1' mm and 1:: and 1*(.7 mm in 1::7 and 1::: res0ectiel$. +he rain d#ring the entire monsoon season o! 1::: ,as 316.) mm ,hile the aerage is 8)'.1 mm. +he so#thern region receied onl$ nominal rains o! 1* to 3* mm and o! a !e, ho#rs d#ration d#ring this $ear.+he monsoon s$stem started receding a!ter a hea$ do,n0o#r that occ#rred all oer ,estern India incl#ding 2e0al in <#l$ )***. +he monsoon tro#gh line mar-ing the  ecessie concentration o! rain ma-ing clo#ds started shi!ting grad#all$ to,ards Bihar in the easterncentral 0roince o! India. +he tro#gh line ,as centred on the +erai or the districts on the slo0es o! the "imala$as in 2e0al in earl$ A#g#st and there ,as record hea$ rain!all o! :7.6 mm in the =alle$% on A#g#st 7% )***% #0 !rom :).7 mm in 1:'3.+he s$stem o! 0#sh !rom the Ba$ o! Bengal and 0#ll !rom Central India on,ards to the ,est and north,est% i!#rcation o! the monsoon s$stem !rom Central India at <hansi into t,o ranches% one going ,est to Sindh and the other going north,est to the 2orthern Areas o! Pa-istan is not eing osered !or the 0ast !e, $ears. In 0roceeding ,est% the s$stem either loses the driing !orce to 0#sh rain clo#ds to the ,est or the 0#ll o! the lo,  0ress#re zone oer Sindh and Balochistan di!!#ses and o!!ers no attraction. +his ma$ e attri#ted to the aderse im0act o! the dominant 5a 2ina !actor o0erating oer the Ba$ o! Bengal d#ring the 0ast. +he 5a 2ina !actor eing the o00osite o! >l 2ino 0roides cooling and dr$ing e!!ect and ecomes o0erational a!ter each onset o! >l 2ino eent. +his can ca#se !lood !lo,s in Braham0#tra that in#ndates Bangladesh and lo, sno,!all and sno,melt !lo, in the Ind#s and <hel#m catchment areas so that oth riers had lo, !lo, #ntil Ma$ )***. It ,as ca#se !or losing the driing !orce o! lo, 0ress#re s$stem oer the Ba$ o! Bengal to allo, the trael 0ast /est Bengal and as s#ch there ,as hea$ rain!all in Se0temer )***% the li-e o! ,hich ,as ,itnessed )) $ears ac-. "ea$ 0reci0itation shed the critical amo#nt o! moist#re necessar$ !or rains and on reaching Central India and Pa-istan% the remaining moist#re di!!#sed into aridit$ 0reailing there leaing er$ little rain ca0acit$ in it. +he oerall res#lt is that shortage o! ,ater !rom the so#rce has aggraated the 0rolem o! aailailit$ o! !resh,ater% ,hich has een 0lag#ing eer$ cit$ and to,n in the co#ntr$ !or #ite some time. 2one o! its cities is 0re0ared to meet the eent#alit$ ,ith res0ect to shortage o! !resh,ater. Islamaad ,as !irst hit in its 33$ear histor$ $ the ,orst ,ater crisis in 1::8. +he critical sit#ation has contin#ed and 839 o! the 0eo0le in Ra,al0indi ,ere ,itho#t ,ater in s#mmer this $ear. +his cit$ needs 8' MGD #t ,as getting onl$ )( MGD d#ring the <an#ar$A0ril 0eriod.+he shortage has similarl$ 0roo-ed serio#sness in dro#ght conditions that are 0reailing all oer Sindh% Balochistan and P#n?a. +he ,orst a!!ected areas in Balochistan and Sindh are the ac-,ard arid and hill$ areas% e.g. &acho and &ohistan in Dad# district% <ohi% Mehar% &hair0#r 2athan Shah% Seh,an and +hano B#la &han as ,ell as the ,estern areas o! &otri. Dro#ght li-e conditions that had een 0artl$ alleiated $ some rain!all in Cholistan in <#l$ hae hit it again ,here )** 0onds and toas hae dried #0 d#e to ret#rn o! hot ,eather. +he 0onds ,ere !illed ,hen rain !ell in <#l$ and 0eo0le ,ho had migrated to greenelt areas o! P#n?a !or ,ater and !odder ret#rned home. @er )** o! the 3(*  0onds had dried #0 $ end o! Se0temer ,hile a small #antit$ ,as le!t in the others d#e to no rain!all in A#g#st and an intense heat% ,hich ea0orated the ,ater m#ch earlier. Anal$sis o! the Sit#ation /ater shortage in Pa-istan ma$ e related to ecos$stem misalance and to the 0olitics o! gloal ,arming% ,hich is s#ggested to e res0onsile !or shrin-age o! glaciers% recession  o! sno, coer on the coastline o! Greenland% and !or the !inding that ice at 2orth Pole ,as in molten condition in <#ne this $ear. "o,eer% ,hen a giant iceerg o! the size o! <amaica% close to eing record size ,ith a length o! ):( -m and ,idth o! 3' -m% ,as  ro-en !ree !rom Antarctics Ross Ice Shel!% in March this $ear% no alarm ell rang. It ,as considered a normal 0henomenon since the ice sheet has to maintain a alance% and ma$ e it is related to the c$cles o! ,etness and dr$ness noted in Shnitni-o anal$sis% ,hich sho,s the eistence o! a general la, o! terrestrial h#midit$ c$cle that re0eats eer$ 17** to )*** $ears. +he 0resent erratic ariations attri#ted to climate change ma$ er$ ,ell e !ollo,ing the terrestrial c$cle $ ,hich the earth ma$ e 0assing thro#gh a transitor$ 0eriod !rom highl$ h#mid to a dr$ 0hase. Dro#ghts !re#enc$ is d#e to loss o! share o! land $ continents ,hile the gain in ol#me o! ,ater $ oceans is ca#sing their e0ansion in area. +he oserations oer the last cent#r$ sho, an ann#al loss o! 83* c#ic -m o! ,ater !rom land and rise in the leel o! sea,ater at a rate o! 1.) mm.C$cles o! dr$ness and ,etness recorded !or &arachi !ind ade#ate e0lanation $ Shnitni-o anal$sis. 5ong dr$ s0ells are not common in &arachi; the maim#m 0eriod ranges !rom ' to : months oer a 0eriod o! at the most one $ear. +he dr$ing #0 o! "# dam and red#ced ,ater !lo, in the Ind#s are indications that 0ersistence o! 5a 2ina !actor has ind#ced a climate change and disr#0ted the c$clic 0rocess. C$cles o! dr$ s0ells re0eat in 8' to (3 $ears% the !irst one to e noted ,as !rom @ctoer 17(' to <#ne 17(7% the second !rom A0ril to Decemer 1:*8. +his c$cle re0eated ,ith lo, rain!all in 1:(1. +he last dr$ s0ells occ#rred in 1:7'% 1::3 and no, in 1::: and )***.+he ga0 et,een hea$ rain $ears aries !rom 8 to 11 $ears ,ith the longest one etending oer (* $ears. Records are aailale to s#ggest that there is the 0eriodicit$ o! (* $ears e.g. 1763 38' mm% 1:13 381 mm% and 1:61 61* mm; !or 1766 383 mm% 1:16 ((( mm% and 1:6' '13 mm; 17'7 6*( mm% 1:)6 (*:% and 1:'' )*'% and !or 17:8 ('' mm% 1:88 '8( mm% and 1::8 8(* mm. S.2. 2ai had in his anal$sis s#ggested the eistence o! a short c$cle o! 3 to ( $ears% medi#m c$cle o! 1* to 13 $ears% Br#c-ners c$cle o! 17 to )3 $ears and a long c$cle o! (* $ears. Aailale records s#ggest that the nat#ral 0rocesses com0ensate the de!icit o! one $ear ,ith ecess in the !ollo,ing $ear. +his s#ggests that the t,o $ears !ollo,ing 1::( and 1::6 sho#ld hae een de!icit $ears and that the net dr$ s0ell to occ#r in 1:::. Incidentall$ this ha00ens to e the case. Accordingl$ )**) sho#ld e a er$ rain$ $ear. +he critical sit#ation% ,hich has  0reci0itated in the !orm o! dro#ght% th#s a00ears to e 0art o! the nat#ral re0etitie c$cles. Com0ensation o! de!icienc$ o! the 0ast $ears ma$ e d#e to correctie meas#res ado0ted to reerse the damages done to an ecos$stem% s#ggesting that the same are not irreersile. I! s#ital$ co#ntered% the ,ater alance can still e managed. +he 0rocess o! deserti!ication% res#lting !rom remoal o! egetatie coer needs to e arrested to sto0 the e0ansion o! heat zone and to reerse the damages that hae occ#rred in the ecos$stem  #t that re#ires 0olitical ,ill.
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