Stop Construction of Mega Dams on Indus River in Pakistan
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The government of Pakistan is currently trying to crowdfund the building of two mega-dams on the Indus River. The initial budget for the Diamer-Basha and Mohmand Dams is estimated at $12.4 billion. That does not include the approximate 63% overrun cost that usually accompanies large dam projects. With such a massive investment, it’s important to note that unlike other public works projects, the people of Pakistan will not see any kind of return on investment until the dams are fully completed.
Mega-dams such as the Diamer-Basha and Mohmand dams lead to the decimation of local flora and fauna through land erosion, saltwater encroachment, silt build-up, and improper diversion of water resources to other areas. These dams can also introduce population displacement, tropical diseases and increase instances of landslides and water table disturbance.
The Diamer-Basha and Mohmand Dams will also cause an acute water shortage in the lower riparian and loss of land due to seawater intrusion. Currently, the worst water shortages in the country can be seen in Badin, Sujawal, and Thatta Districts. The existing Tarbela and Mangla dams and large canal projects have led to the erosion of 3.5 million acres of land, resulting in the loss of valuable land, resources, and livelihoods.
The construction of these dams will adversely impact the people and the environment, not help them. Nor will the construction of these dams address water shortages due to wasteful irrigation practices, corruption, pollution, or ineffective management of excessive water supply during the monsoon season. According to the UNDP and the Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources, Pakistan will dry up by 2025 but experts and advocates agree that mega-dams will cause more harm than good.
By signing this petition, you raise your voice against the construction of mega-dams on the Indus River in Pakistan and tell the Government of Pakistan that crowdfunding does not address their duty to properly finance infrastructure projects for its people.
In signing this petition you are also demanding the Government of Pakistan to address the water shortage crisis with more sustainable and holistic approaches, to advocate for better environmental stewardship, and to protect Pakistan’s valuable natural resources and its people.
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