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Use of Untreated Wastewater in Peri-Urban Agriculture in Pakistan: Risks and Opportunities

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Ensink, Jeroen H. J.; Van Der Hoek, Wim; Matsuno, Yutaka; Munir, Sarfraz; Aslam, M. Rizwan
Date: 2002
Agency: International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Colombo, Sri Lanka
Series: IWMI Research Report no. 64
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/4560
Sector: Agriculture
Water Resource & Irrigation
Urban Commons
Region: Middle East & South Asia
Subject(s): water resources
water quality
urban affairs
Abstract: "The practice of using untreated wastewater for irrigation is widespread but has been largely ignored because the norm has always been that wastewater should be treated before use. Increasing water scarcity, lack of money for treatment and a clear willingness by farmers to use untreated wastewater have led to an uncontrolled expansion of wastewater use. It is therefore important to better document the practice of irrigation with untreated wastewater in order to find out how it could be improved within the financial possibilities of very low-income countries. The town of Haroonabad in Pakistan's arid southern Punjab was selected for a case study on the costs and benefits of the use of untreated wastewater for irrigation. The study looked at health, environment and socioeconomic aspects of irrigation with untreated wastewater. This report deals with the environmental aspects of the study. The objectives of the study were: -To identify the environmental impacts of wastewater use in a small town in Pakistan. -To estimate water and nutrient application efficiencies and suggest ways to make better use of wastewater as a resource."

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