REGARDLESS of one's views on the Kalabagh Dam or, for that matter, any big dam, there are at least no two views about the fact that the issue is highly divisive. An agreement on not to agree. That the issue has become so politicised that the technical arguments of those against and those in favour have been obfuscated, and have given way to mere sloganeering. Meanwhile, the incessant decrease in the availability of water continues. At the time of Partition, we had a water availability of 5000 cubic metres per capita. That has dwindled to 1500 cubic metres per capita. The 1000 mark is generally regarded as the point of disaster. Since our dwindling resources won't wait for a consensus, it only makes sense for the government to at least take whatever steps that are not controversial. That is why the ten small and medium dams that the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) approved on Thursday is a good development and there should be demand for more of the same. On that front, water storage should also be complemented by water conservation. Every year, we waste a sinful amount of water due to seepages. The conservation approach should also be applied to the power sector and energy conservation should be treated as the 'fifth fuel' that it is. In fact, if a corresponding amount were to be spent on the conservation of water and power, some experts predict that we just might save as much water and power as a megadam would store and generate. The ECNEC also approved the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR). There is an absolute lack of effective public transport in our major cities. The restoration of the KCR would go a long way in providing our largest metropolis with better transport. More and more cities the world over are realising that even though road infrastructure should be maintained properly, an increase in the number of roads or their widening is never going to solve the problem; the more you build, the more cars will be on it. The only true answer is developing more of the public transport infrastructure. A corresponding investment should also be made in other cities. Granted, building a road network from scratch might be unfeasible, but increasing the number of regulated busses can be a step.