Pakistan is a country facing terrible damage of floods & water restoration problems since it came into being. There are many resources that can be used for estimation & evaluation of damages. In this Blog/article author shared their own story for revealing the truth and facts about the damages of floods and how they related to the water restoration problem. According to Author, It was 2011 & 2012 he became Part of the project with a Non government organization Named WWF-PAK(INGO). During the project Author visited physically the entire damaged areas of flood along with Indus river. These areas consist in three different provinces of Pakistan Namely Sindh, Punjab and Kpk(khyber Pakhtunkhawa).
The project was entirely based on Environment cleanness and awareness. In this a Biogas Plant of 6 ft3 was awarded to the Flood affectees who live along the Bank of Indus river. This project having many steps like selection of beneficiaries, evaluation of biomass produced or animal manuer, Construction of biogas plants, commissioning of Biogas plants, filling of Evaluation form based on many exponents & parameters. The project was funded by Dutch government in the flood relief and rehabilitation operations in Pakistan. The mainly project was handed and implemented by the WWF-PAK(INGO) and with a few local small enterprises and NGOS. Author performed duties of Monitoring and evaluation officer for two years traveling along three provinces. In this journey visited 375 Biogas plants physically in remote areas along with Indus river.
In this section, we will discuss how biogas can help mitigate some of these damages and protect people from future floods. Organic wastes like sewage and food wastes break down into biogas, a renewable energy source. Anaerobic digestion is the process by which bacteria convert organic molecules into methane and carbon dioxide gas. Methane (CH4), carbon dioxide (CO2), and water vapour make up the majority of biogas (H2O). Only minute amounts of other air pollutants, such as nitrous oxide (N2O) or sulfur oxides, are produced by this process (SOx). The Biogas production will reduce the wood used for cooking and heating purposes. The more the trees the minimal the damage of the flood.
Damages of flood & Water Restoration in Pakistan
Floods are a type of natural calamity that can seriously harm people, property, and infrastructure. Floods can cause significant damage to buildings, infrastructure, and human lives. Numerous factors, such as prolonged periods of heavy rain, snowmelt, collapsed dams or levees, or tsunamis, can result in flooding. The Indus River is one of the major rivers in Pakistan that frequently subjected to flooding. Over 30 million people have been affected by 33 riverine floods that have slammed the Indus since 2000, killed 5000 people, and damaged the local economy by more than $20 billion. This just a sneak peek of the damages of floods in Pakistan.
For many decades while the country faced constant flood damage there is still no water restoration system in Pakistan after flood passes. Most of flood water flows directly to the seas. There are very least number of dams in Pakistan that can restore the water. There are many reasons behind the most is a political dilemma in those areas which ruin the entire Indus basin in most areas of Pakistan. Both damages from floods & water restoration problems are interlinked. To understand the whole story Author shares his experience in Revelations.
Revealings and findings Across Provinces
As working across many villages, towns and cities in 3 provinces of Pakistan Experienced many strange and new things. The people who live along the bank of Indus river are mostly live life in Austerity. They have meager income sources. Mostly depends on Agriculture and livestock. These people learnt from past that they are living on the edge of the damages of flood & water restoration. Some villages are only a few feet away from the river bank or River basin. The people of these areas believe that no one can ever help or rehabilitate if they leave these dangerous flood zones. Let’s overview the entire findings of 3 provinces.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK)
In these areas, people are mostly attached to the sugar cane Business, growing and cutting trees. They hardly understand the dangers or demerits of the damages of flood and water restoration. Even they don’t really want to understand. They lose belief and trust in Government or Non-government officials just because of the corrupt and mafia-based relief system. This is a major issue but there is one good thing in these areas. The people grow trees in their houses and agricultural lands because there is a huge market for match sticks. Many research papers showed that the KPK was facing less damage of floods as compared to the Sindh and Punjab provinces. The main reason is the number of trees and the interest of people to grow trees for their economic-health resilience. Meanwhile, these people hosted their guests with full zeal and zest.
Punjab is the biggest populated province of Pakistan. The Indus basin is touching north to south of Punjab. These including areas Kotaddu,Muzafargarh, Bakhar and Rajanpur and few other areas. The people here in Punjab although more educated than other provinces but these people pretended to be stay affected by flood damages. These areas are known as kacha area. These areas are often neglected by govt. officials and politican due to the criminal expediency and futuristic damages of the flood. Both these factors making people haunted that we will never get a safe and peaceful place that would be the far away from damages of flood. So in short all these factors made them crippled for their struggle of betterment and good livelihood.
Sindh is the land of saint and loving people. The floods have had a significant negative impact on Sindh province. As Author witnessed the worst effected areas Sukkur, Ghotki, Jacobabad ,Shikarpur, dadu, Sajwaal and kharipur nathanshah. These areas always hit hard whwether its the flood of 2010 or the flood of 2022. Few common things among these people are they lead very hard life. As they influenced by Austerity, poverty and facing gangs of looters backed by local feudals and Tribes of different castes. The people live in houses of mud and bushes due to the fear of damages of flood and water restoration issues. There was not even a single dispensary in these areas for the people of 1500 to 2000.
Author wants to highlight an Event” Once I was sitting in the remote areas of District sukkur, an old person(patient) comes to a private clinic i was sitting there hosted as a guest, the person treated as doctor was not a doctor neither having medical education. He took the blood of an old patient in a small plastic bag for laboratory analysis. I asked it was wrong. The man replied” dear, this old person not having enough money to go to city’s hospital neither anyone can afford his medical treatment, sooner or later he will die in the same pain, I was just trying to give him a Placebo effect and collect his blood in plastic bag”.This event was like a picture of 12 years old but still reflects the same kind of images and videos in 2022 flood. These loving and innocent peoples are Submerged in the fear of feudalism and racism conflicts. Most of these people were staying nearby the Indus Basin even a few steps.
After working for almost Two years on this project few recommendations or suggestions. As mainly the project was based on the commissioning and evaluations of biogas units. Firstly, people in these areas were fully satisfied and happy with the initiative of WWF-PAK(INGO). They took so many benefits like Methane gas for cooking, waste of these plants used as natural Fertilizers for agriculture in these areas. Also these biogas plants were conserving the environment and making it safe and healthy. As of 2022 the flood damage more than half or complete in these same areas as discussed above. It’s the best time for relief and giving people awareness about the merits of biogas plants. The government and non-government organizations should come forward to make it possible for flood victims. This step leads to the mitigation of both environment and damages of floods.
As the political and racist dilemma of these areas, it is hard to make dam or water restoration mechanisms nearby. With the advancement of other renewable energy sources like solar energy, wind energy projects on small scale can benefit for present and futuristic Socio-economic benefits. These peoples are hard worker and culture lover. The best way is to give them proper respect and rehabilitate in a safe place far away from the damage of flood’s zones. Usage of renewables helps to cost less and gives more benefits to environment, Flood victims, and Our dear country.
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