Experts predict that the city’s water shortage problem is going to worsen, not for want of water but for want of sense. “If we don’t decide today how to conserve water, tomorrow our taps might run dry,” experts in the Ministry of Environment warn, pointing out that half of Islamabad is already on tankers. There exists no equation between water availability and use, they say. “Do we have an equation how water is used? Have local authorities carried out citywide water audits?” a source in the ministry asked. “We fear more than 50 per cent of the water put in the distribution system is lost due to leakage. What [is] the CDA [Capital Development Authorty] doing to plug these leakages and save millions of gallons of water?”
“CDA has no idea how water table is dropping because of the numerous private tube wells [...] Today, streams have disappeared. Sewerage water contaminates ones that have survived. There should be fines on wasting this precious source at car washes, for tank overflows at homes, and gardening etc.,” fumes Helga Ahmed, an environmentalist.
“CDA is building walls to stop rainwater from seeping through the sides ignoring the fact that the seepage goes to recharge aquifers. Blocking this natural system would take the rainwater into Leh Nullah, cause flooding and eventually go waste,” said an Environment Ministry official. [...] However, a source in CDA explained that the natural streams were being lined with concrete only at places where residential areas or major constructions are in danger.
[...] “Rainwater harvesting is the next renewable revolution. We can start with the President House or Parliament Secretariat collecting rainwater to irrigate their huge gardens,” said an environmentalist in the ministry.
Source: Jamal Shahid, Dawn, 11 May 2009