Sindh Environmental Protection Agency: poor and ineffective role
By: HASHIM ABRO
THE Sindh province is faced with several environmental problems. These problems are gas flaring in the upper and lower Sindh regions, oil spillage at Karachi and ecosystems pollution that result from major oil and gas activities, as well as activities of groups or individual members of the Delta communities.
The Sindh government established an environmental body called Sindh Environmental Protection Agency (Sepa) to tackle with these multi – faceted environmental problems.
The agency established guideline and standards for the petroleum industry to regulate the activities of oil and gas companies in the province.
It also established an environmental regulatory framework in the form environmental impact assessment (EIA) to regulate developmental projects and to ensure sustainable development.
Today, the Agency is not suffering from poor funding but lack of will and poor quality of available information and poor communication of information on the state of the delta environment in Thatta district and in the disaster – battered districts in the province.
The Sepa and the provincial environmental department are requested to enforce environmental laws and improve the monitoring system. The Sepa must adopt a holistic approach to environmental monitoring in the Thar Desert also.