ISLAMABAD   -   Pakistan needs Rs 450 billion to meet SDG targets by 2030 as the country is far behind on its SDG 6 commitment and currently the access for safe drinking water is 36 percent and for sanitation is zero percent.

Pakistan is a signatory to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and SDG 6 i.e. clean water and sanitation aims to provide safe drinking water to 95 percent of the population and access to safe sanitation to 72 percent of the population by the year 2030, said Pakistan Economic Survey 2018-19.

Currently the national base line for safe drinking water is 36 percent and for sanitation is zero percent, said the report.

Talking about the inclusion and disparities the economic survey pointed out that there is significant difference between access to piped water in urban areas with coverage of 48 percent and of rural areas with 13 percent only. Furthermore, only 10 percent of the poorest have access to piped water supply compared to 39 percent of the rich and 35 percent of the richest groups. Under sanitation, less than half of the rural population in Pakistan use improved sanitation. Only 20 percent of the poorest have access to improved sanitation compared to 82 percent of the richest. Similarly, 40 percent of the poorest have no toilets compared to only 1 percent of the richest.

Regarding Sustainable Development Targets for Pakistan, Economic Survey 2018-19 said that by using the SDG costing tools developed by SWA, Pakistan calculated annual investment needs for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Sector. After calculations on current coverage of safely managed water i.e. 36 percent and safely managed for sanitation i.e. zero. Based on SDG costing tool, it is estimated that Pakistan needs Rs450 billion annually to meet SDG targets by 2030. Presently, Pakistan is spending PKRs 80 billion annually through public sector while overall financial layout of the sector is PKRs 130 billion. However, it is under-reported as many of the departments, providing water and sanitation services as integral component of their interventions do not report their spendings like school education, health, housing, works and communication, irrigation, etc.

The current allocation for 2018-19 is Rs. 150 billion and Pakistan shall be able to make a growth of 2.1 percent annually. The country shall be able to cover 95 percent of safe water and 72 percent of safe sanitation (62 percent by investment and 10 percent with private sector).

Regarding smog in Punjab, the economic survey revealed that 65 percent of the sources were detected within Pakistan. Secondly, sectoral contribution of pollutants (NOx, SOx, PM 2.5, CO and NMVOCs) based on the data of last 10 years (2008-17) was determined using the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) methodologies. The outcomes demonstrate the transport sector as biggest contributor (43 percent) in total air pollutants emission in Punjab while the rice residue burning adds just 20 percent. Besides, Industry and Power sectors hold 25 percent and 12 percent, respectively. Overall, the energy sector occupies 80 percent of the total air pollutants emissions in Punjab. The emissions of NOx, being main pollutant responsible for smog formation, are highest from transport sector (58 percent). Industry and Power collectively holds 34 percent share in NOx emissions while rice residue burning is just at 9 percent.

On the Ten Billion Tree Tsunami Program the report said that Phase-I will be implemented with an overall cost of Rs. 110.0826 billion. The federal government would make an allocation of Rs. 69.067 billion on cost sharing basis for five years (2019-2024) to revive the forestry and an allocation of Rs.7.30 billion for wildlife resources of Pakistan.