Like the Indian city of Mumbai, Pakistan’s port city of Karachi — one of the biggest cities in the world with a whopping population of more than 20 million, is reportedly contributing major chunk in polluting the Arabian Sea.
According to federal Ministry of Ports and Shipping, around 472 million gallons of raw (untreated) sewage is thrown in the sea daily, a gigantic number unacceptable worldwide by environmental standards.
Not sewerage alone but additionally, huge amount of toxic industrial effluent generated in Pakistan’s financial capital, is also thrown in the sea, reported a local daily recently. The city also suffers huge administrative inaction marred by politics in disposal of municipal (residential ) waste.
“Karachi has around 10,000 industrial units, which produce 80 million gallon per day (MGD) of industrial waste comprising toxic metals and chemicals every day which is not treated anywhere and is poured directly into the sea,” said Naeem Mughal, former director general, Sindh Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA).
Besides that, the mega city — capital of Sindh, alone produces 12,000 tons of solid waste every day, but due to lack of scientific dump sites, waste is thrown along the Arabian Sea, which too ultimately reaches into the sea. Major portion of the urban waste comprises plastic, a worst enemy for the ocean life.
Pollution is not only threatening marine life, fish catch and aesthetic value, but it is also causing disasters. According to scientists, Arabian Sea’s tropical cyclones that are now becoming devastating, are also caused by increasing marine pollution.
In recent years, a garbage patch was found in the Indian Ocean.
World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) in a recent study found that more than 80 percent of marine pollution is caused by land-based activities such as toxic chemical runoff, discharge of untreated sewage, industrial effluents and soils waste dumping into the sea.
The increasing pollution has not only reduced the fish-catch but also several species of indigenous fish have completely disappeared along the Sindh coast, said fisherman Talib Kachhi.
A women in Ibrahim Hyderi area of the metropolis showed her feet to the reporter — she is suffering with skin disease due to the pollution.