In Pakistan, water is slipping away, like a silent story of dry rivers and shrinking resources. The nation faces a challenge marked by scarcity, mismanagement, and a growing demand-supply gap. Yet, in this test, innovation and unity become the steadfast anchors, steering Pakistan towards a sustainable and hydrated future to keep the taps flowing.
Spurred by the success of the 6th Karachi International Water Conference organised by Hisaar Foundation (HF), three initiatives have been launched within a month of the conference. These transformative endeavours, outlined in a declaration following the conference, underscore Pakistan’s commitment to addressing critical water and climate challenges.
The first initiative involves the establishment of a National Panel on Water, a significant move aimed at harnessing collective wisdom to address water-related issues. Simi Kamal, Chairperson HF, emphasised the nature of this initiative, drawing parallels with the international panel on climate change. Comprising members from the diverse group ‘Think Tank on Rational Use of Water’, including independent researchers, academics, activists, policy-makers, professors, and strategists, will play a pivotal role in providing comprehensive insights and solutions to Pakistan’s complex water challenges.
The second initiative introduces the Youth Water Network, a collaborative effort by the foundation and Young Water Professionals, Pakistan. Recognising the importance of involving youth in water management, Sanaa Baxamoosa, Director External Relations HF, highlighted the need for fresh perspectives and innovative ideas. The aim is to empower young people in water management, fostering intergenerational equity and environmental responsibility.
The third and final initiative is the creation of the Water and Climate Justice Committee, reflecting the foundation’s commitment to intertwining water and climate change with justice and human rights. Simi Kamal emphasised the need to incorporate justice issues into water discourse, “We feel it is now time to invert this relationship and introduce water and climate change onto ongoing platforms of justice and human rights. As a start, we are forming a committee, titled ‘Water and Climate Justice Committee’, to work with the chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.”
These initiatives mark a significant leap in Pakistan’s efforts to confront the challenges of climate change and water scarcity. Collaborations with international and national panels reflect a renewed focus on sustainable solutions and global cooperation, underlining the foundation’s commitment to translating promises into action.
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