Skip to main content

Dangers of drought persist in Balochistan

https//www.geo.tv/latest/156476
httpsers-of-drought-persist-in-balochistan



By

Shahab Umer

Monday Sep 04, 2017

QUETTA: Balochistan, the largest province in the country in terms of land mass, is blessed with several natural resources including minerals. 

With its beautiful landscape comprising mountains and plains, the province also has forests in some areas and a 1000-kilometre long coastline.

The province, however, has limited land where there are gardens and agricultural tracts. Most part of Balochistan comprises barren land, while fears for drought have even been looming where there is little agricultural land. In fact, it will not be wrong to say that these areas have already been engulfed in a drought situation. The major reason for this is low monsoon rains for the past couple of years. In the areas which received some rains, the threat of drought is almost over.

At present, if we analyse, the northern parts of Balochistan are more prone to drought. These include Qila Abdullah, Qila Saifullah, Pishin, Mastung and other areas. Apart from this, the provincial capital is also facing a drought situation. The dried Hanna Lake — a beautiful tourist spot 10km from Quetta — has completely dried up, which has affected the production of apples, peaches and grapes in the region.

Naseebullah Khan, ambassador of IUCN Balochistan, an environmental organisation, acknowledged the fact that the situation of droughts is getting worse in northern Balochistan. This is a cause of concern for droughts to occur in the western and central areas of Balochistan, he added.

The only reason the conditions in western areas are not as severe as those compared to the north is because of the monsoon rains, which bring some relief to the coastal areas as well. That being said, the danger of drought still looms. Only areas adjacent to Sindh and Punjab experience better conditions.

Due to the shortage of rainfall in southern, northern and central Balochistan, the reliance on ground water has been increasing, contributing to the rapid reduction in ground water in various areas.

Khan added that droughts are not only causing adverse effects on the environment, but even the economy and traditions of the areas are being affected.

Poverty has increased, while the availability of fodder for cattle has decreased, he informed.

Khan explained the change in the environment can be assessed by noting how Siberian seagulls have changed their migration route because of Quetta's Hanna Lake and Noshki's Zangi Nawar dam going dry.

According to Tahir Khan, deputy director of the meteorological department, most areas of Balochistan did not receive considerable rainfall this year. Particularly from March, there has not been as much rainfall as there was in the previous years. "This is why several of these areas are suffering from droughts," he said.

IUCN’s Khan said the government needs to take certain measures, adding that building dams in some areas is not the only solution as they need to be built according to an area’s needs.

“If a dam is built but there are layers of salt/mud then it will not be of much use,” he said.

Three dams hve been built in Pishin over several feet of salt and mud, which is detrimental to storage of water, said Khan.

The government also needs to keep check-and-balance on tube wells as some people install them without putting in much thought and avail water 24/7 from it, most of which is wasted away.

When Provincial Disaster Management Authority’s Director General Mohammed Tariq was approached on the subject, he said that generally there isn’t a big threat of droughts but in some districts, the danger persists.

The official said that overall these districts are around 20, including Quetta Division, Kalat, Makran, and Nasirabad Division. According to the PDMA officials, within the province the harvest of almonds, grapes and apricot has been affected

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Balochistan to establish first medical university

https://www.dawn.com/news/1366135

The Newspaper's Staff CorrespondentOctober 25, 2017QUETTA: The provincial cabinet on Tuesday approved the draft for establishing a medical university in Balochistan.Health minister Mir Rehmat Saleh Baloch made the announcement while speaking at a press conference after a cabinet meeting.“The cabinet has approved the draft of the medical university which would be presented in the current session of the Balochistan Assembly,” he said, adding with the assembly’s approval the Bolan Medical College would be converted into a medical university.Published in Dawn, October 25th, 2017

5 Shia Hazara community members gunned down in Pakistan

http://m.hindustantimes.com/world-news/5-shia-hazara-community-members-gunned-down-in-pakistan/story-CHWR4lYByRHzf2KjHjMloI.html



Five members of the minority Shia Hazara community, including two women, were killed on Sunday in an attack by unidentified gunmen in Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province.This is not the first time that members of the Hazara community have been targeted in Quetta and other parts of Balochistan.(Reuters File Photo)Updated: Sep 11, 2017 00:20 ISTBy Press Trust of India, Press Trust of India, KarachiFive members of the minority Shia Hazara community, including two women, were killed on Sunday in an attack by unidentified gunmen in Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province.The gunmen targeted a car in Kuchluck area of Quetta while it was coming from the Chaman border crossing area, police said.The firing took place when the travellers had stopped at a filling station to refuel their vehicle. Five people of the Shia Hazara community, including two women, died in …

China’s 'Digital Silk Road': Pitfalls Among High Hopes

https://thediplomat.com/2017/11/chinas-digital-silk-road-pitfalls-among-high-hopes/


Will information and communication technologies help China realize its Digital Silk Road?By Wenyuan WuNovember 03, 2017In his speech at the opening ceremony of China’s 19th Party Congress, President Xi Jinping depicted China as a model of scientific and harmonious development for developing nations. Xi’s China wants to engage the world through commerce but also through environmental protection and technological advancement. This includes Beijing’s efforts to fight climate change with information and communication technologies (ICTs) that it plans to export along its “One Belt One Road” initiative (OBOR). Xi may have ambitious plans, but could China be throwing up obstacles in its own way?In his speech, the Chinese president emphasized the need to modernize the country’s environmental protections. The Chinese state is taking an “ecological civilization” approach to development and diplomacy, with a natio…