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October 1, 2020

Groundwater resources to be replenished

Islamabad

October 1, 2020

Islamabad : A project ‘Community Water Stewardship: Replenishing Groundwater Resources has been launched. Some of the key focus areas of the project incude Recharge Wells, Rainwater Harvesting Systems and Floating Treatment Wetlands.

These interventions are being installed in the PepsiCo’s Snacks Plant watershed in the Sundar Industrial Estate, in Lahore in in partnership with WWF with a focus on both urban housing schemes and rural settings. The project is being implemented with the endorsement of key government institutions; Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA) and Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR).

One of the key locations for the project is Manak Village comprising of about 700-800 households. Manak village is experiencing a sinking water table and deteriorating water quality due to over abstraction and inundated sewage water. In the pilot phase of the project, two ‘Rainwater Harvesting Systems’ have been installed to offset the use of groundwater during the rainy season these are in addition to two’ Floating Treatment Wetlands’ which will improve the water quality in wetlands adjacent to the village, making it safe for agricultural use and aquaculture. These interventions have been designed to replenish 10 million litres of water annually which will be scaled up to 27 million liters by 2021. The scaling up phase will include the installation of more than 50 Rainwater harvesting systems in Manak and nearby villages.

A local fisherman at Manak Village, who has been rearing fish in the village wetlands, appreciated the installation of ‘floating Treatment Wetlands’ at the village ponds, ‘The ‘Floating Treatment Wetland’ with its ability to purify water will improve the water quality in the ponds resulting in higher fish yields’. The villagers have also started benefiting from the Rainwater harvesting systems by utilizing the stored rainwater for non-potable uses, during power outages.

Furqan Ahmed Syed, CEO PepsiCo Pakistan and Afghanistan said, ’Long term sustainable use of water is critical to the continuity of our business, our license to operate, and the health of our communities. Our water replenishment efforts are focused towards the same watershed where the extraction has occurred. The partnership with WWF is another step forward towards achieving this goal.’