The Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR) made the grim forecast in a new report which claimed the country touched the “water stress line” in 1990 before crossing the “water scarcity line” in 2005.
An unnamed government official in the south Asian country told Pakistani media that urgent research is needed to find a solution – but warned of a lack of available government funds.
Pakistan has the world’s fourth highest rate of water use but is dependent on water from a single source – the Indus River basin in India – and rainfall has been steadily declining, with some experts claiming this is down to climate change.
An estimated million people live in Pakistan’s largest city, Karachi – but very few have running water after the land has gradually dried up, forcing many residents to queue for hours for supplies to be given to them.
Shamsul Mulk, former chairman of the Water and Power Development Authority in the country, said water policy is simply non-existent in Pakistan. Policymakers act like “absentee landlords” over water, he added.
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