Worlds largest Sweetwater Lake
by Dr Kazi Khadim Hussain, Qasimabad Hyderabad
Courtesy and Thanks: Daily Dawn, 17.3.2009
How the enlightened nations feel concerned about the worth of their precious natural wealth and preserve them under any cost; the file photo of Lake Baikal appeared in Dawn (March 14) is a best example of such expression.
Lake Baikal, located in Siberia, the present Russian Federation also known, as the “Blue Eye of Siberia”: is the deepest and the largest of freshwater lakes in the world by volume. It contains more water than all of the North American Great Lakes combined.
The Baykalsk Pulp and Paper Mill (BPPM), and the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean Pipeline established in the vicinity of Lake once threatened this great source of sweet water. As shown in the photograph the Russian government realizing the harm caused by BPPM’s chemical affluent to the lake has decided to close the installation. Similarly government has also agreed with environmentalists and changed the route of planned Pipeline at the considerable distance from the lake.
Unfortunately in Pakistan; already in front of drought like situation due to severe shortage of water, the sweet water lakes specially in Sindh have been completely devastated by discharging untreated waste and saline water through LBOD and RBOD. These lakes, which were once great source of fresh water, marine life and habitat of seasonal birds, what’s more providing livelihood to millions of inhabitants are now big ponds containing water with high arsenic material. The aquatic life has been destroyed, the seasonal birds have changed their route and the livelihood of millions has been snatched. Moreover ecology of the areas has been destroyed completely.
The government and the civil society must take cue from the Russians and come forward to save these great water reservoirs by undoing man-made harmful projects before things go out of hand.