WWF-Pakistan stresses need to save water for sustainable development

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LAHORE: Worldwide Fund-Pakistan (WWF-Pakistan) has stressed that there is an urgent need for communities, companies and government to come to secure water in a bid to maintain the balance between people and nature.

To commemorate World Water Week, WWF-Pakistan, in collaboration with the Leather Product Development Institute (LPDI), organised two-day awareness sessions in Sialkot aimed at raising awareness on water challenges, risks and effective management of available water resources in the country.

An art competition was also organised for students from the Fine Arts Department at LPDI, who created unique paintings that showed the linkage between biodiversity and water.

WWF-Pakistan Director General (DG) Hammad Naqi Khan, at the occasion, said that it was important to value the country’s water bodies, particularly rivers and lakes. He said that to achieve sustainable development goals, it was urgent to manage them efficiently and conserve other water resources.

“Pakistan has become a water scare country due to mismanagement and ill-planning of water resources,” he said, adding that the country’s per capita surface water availability had declined from 5,260 cubic metres per year in 1951 to around 1,000 cubic metres in 2016.

Khan also warned that this quantity was likely to drop further to about 860 cubic metres by 2025.

“The rapid rise in population will further aggravate the water situation,” he said and emphasised that water and ecosystems and their impact on human development required collective action and business ecosystem strategies.

Meanwhile, WWF-Pakistan is also hosting a 10-litre water challenge, a short video competition for the youth to raise awareness and educate the masses. The competition is aimed at making the youth understand the water issues in Pakistan.

Under this challenge, students will spend 24 hours using only 10 litres of water. This includes water consumed in all daily activities including the water used to prepare meals, bathe and washing of clothes.

The experience will be documented by the students and will make the public understand how hard it is to spend a day with such little water.

In this way, the water challenge will change students’ perspective about freshwater use and management.

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