Comparative Assessment of Pakistan National Drinking Water Quality Standards with Selected Asian Countries and World Health Organization
Khwaja, Mahmood A.; Aslam, Anum | April 2018
World Health Organization defines “safe-drinking water” as the water that does not represent any significant risk to health over the lifetime of its consumption, including different sensitivities that may occur between life stages. Being the most drinking fluid, water is believed to be the major source of transmitting diseases (Ullah et al. 2014). According to World Health Organization (WHO), 80% of all human diseases are reported to occur due to the biological contamination of water in the developing countries (Sulehria et al. 2013). Drinking water quality has been debated throughout the world due to its increasing demand for human consumption as well as its detrimental effects of increased urbanization and industrialization. Direct discharge of domestic waste, industrial effluents, agricultural runoffs, leakages from septic tanks, and poor management of farm wastes are considered the main water pollution sources (Nabeela et al. 2014). In Pakistan, access to safe drinking water is one of the major public health problems, as the country is facing water quality and quantity issues, being documented in various studies. The large proportion of drinking water, almost 70%, comes from groundwater aquifers within the country (Butt and Khair 2014). Bacteriological contamination, toxic metals like arsenic, iron, cadmium, nickel, pesticides and in some areas nitrates and fluorides are major threats to water quality within the country (Azizullah et al. 2011). In Pakistan, microbial contamination in drinking water has been highlighted as a major cause of illness and deaths among people, especially children who are most vulnerable (Daud et al. 2017). Intermittent water supply is common in urban areas and outbreaks of gastroenteritis and other water borne diseases have become a normal feature (Hyder et al. 2009). It has been estimated that 30% of all diseases and 40% of all deaths are occurred due to poor water quality (particularly fecal contamination) within the country. 20-40% of beds in Pakistani hospitals are occupied by patients suffering from waterborne diseases, including cholera, diarrhea, dysentery, hepatitis, typhoid, etc. (Nabeela et al. 2014). Water-linked diseases in Pakistan cause national income losses of Rs 25-28 billion annually, which is approximately 0.6-1.44 % of the country’s GDP (Tahir at al., 2010).
CitationKhwaja, Mahmood A.; Aslam, Anum. 2018. Comparative Assessment of Pakistan National Drinking Water Quality Standards with Selected Asian Countries and World Health Organization. © Sustainable Development Policy Institute. http://hdl.handle.net/11540/8388.
World Health Organization
Water Related Diseases
River basin development
Cost of medical care
Drinking water protection
Integrated water development
Rainwater catchmentShow allCollapse