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February 6, 2020

Wasa gets go-ahead for water treatment plant

Lahore

February 6, 2020

LAHORE:The City will soon have its first-ever surface water treatment plant as Water and Sanitation Agency (Wasa) has started land acquisition process for the project worth billions of rupees after getting a final go-ahead from the federal government.

This was revealed by Wasa Managing Director Syed Zahid Aziz while talking with The News here Wednesday. He said Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) had also agreed to provide a soft loan for the mega project conceived by the agency in a bid to provide clean drinking water to the citizens.

He said the project would help save the underground water aquifer of the provincial metropolis for future generations. According to the project details, Wasa will construct three waste water treatment plants and one surface water treatment plant in the provincial metropolis.

The Wasa MD said AIIB screening committee had already cleared the project and sent a technical committee to discuss the details with Wasa authorities. Zahid Aziz said that NESPAK had also completed all the paperwork. Civil work on the project would be started soon. He said as the groundwater supply of the City would not be able to support the drinking water needs of its rapidly growing population over the coming decade, the alternative sources of drinking water should be explored and cultivated on an emergency basis.

He maintained that Wasa was taking every step to fight all future challenges relating to supply of drinking water and was aware of the gravity of the situation regarding groundwater depletion. He said the surface water treatment plant would be constructed at Bhini Village at the River Ravi.

There is around three to four million acre feet water that skips to Pakistan from India into Ravi and is significantly less polluted to the extent that it can be stored and treated for drinking. The project would address multiple problems of Wasa with regard to providing drinking water, the MD concluded.

Environmental experts said that excess pumping of groundwater could result in a future disaster and would only worsen the problem resulting in further lowering the water table.

They said increasing water pumping operation was expensive solution whereas the project in the pipeline was the only solution to the present circumstances.