ISLAMABAD   -   Director General Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency (DG-EPA) Farzana Altaf Shah on Thursday said the availability of clean drinking water, solid and liquid waste management system have become imperative to ensure eco-friendly and sustainable housing projects in the federal capital. She was addressing to the public hearing of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Reports of Construction of Housing Units at Pakistan Housing Authority Foundation (PHA-F) Multi-storey Apartments at Sector I-16/3 and PHA-F’s Officer’s Residencia Multistorey Apartments at Kuri Road. The growing expansion of the federal capital reduced its per capita water reserve which had mitigated availability of clean and accessible drinking water in various sectors of the metropolis, she said.  Altaf added that EPA’s foremost demand during EIA report approval was availability of 5-year plantation plan by the project implementing body at the construction site and method to provide means of clean drinking water to the residents. She said: “Clean air and water are the most essential amenities required for human life to exist and the housing project developers should give top priority to provide access to these basic public facilities.” The EPA DG made it clear that no project without proper sewage treatment plant (STP) would be permitted to operate as earlier Park Enclave of Capital Development Authority (CDA) faced closure due to no STP which was consequently developed. 

However, the PHA-F Residencia Apartments at Kurri Road being adjacent to Park Enclave had the opportunity to chip in for establishing a joint STP to reduce contamination of passing by fresh water channels. 

“The matter of clean drinking water and sewage treatment will not be overlooked in any public hearing.”

The rapidly increasing urbanisation and huge solid waste generation in response to the massive anthropogenic activities demanded to promote zero waste methods in developing new housing schemes, she added. 

Speaking on the occasion, Director PHA-F Arif Wazir told the Forum that as many as 5,000 plants were planted at the project site of PHA-F Apartments which was a barren land before construction. 

He added that in order to address solid and liquid waste management issues, at PHA-F Kurri Road Residencia, private company was being hired. Similarly, he said septic tanks were already built at the project site to address liquid waste management. 

Wazir said a water treatment plant was also set up at sector I-11 to provide clean drinking water to residents of PHA-F Apartments whereas similar would be reciprocated in other projects as per requirement. 

He went on to mention that the hydrological study of the Kurri Road Apartments was also being carried out keeping in view the ecological impact of the project.