Vol. 2, Issue 4 (2015)
How Successful Pakistan has been to fight against major floods of its history (1970-2010): With special reference to July-August 2010 flood
Author(s): Syed Iazaz Ahmad Bukhari, Shahid Hassan Rizvi
Abstract: As Pakistan is situated in an exceptional geo-climatic zone, so it is recognized as top disaster prone country on the globe. About 60 percent landmass of the country is vulnerable to floods. It has been found through quantitative assessment that Pakistan has faced 17 floods of various magnitudes over the last 37 years - 1973, 1975, 1976,1977,1978,1982, 1988, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1997, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2010, among these 50 percent have been identified as mega floods. The flood 1973 flood demolished three million houses and killed 160 persons. During August 1976 death toll reached the limit of 425. The flood of 1988 killed around 508 people. During the flood of 1992 number of flood affected people were 10 million and the number touched the limit of 20 million during the flood of 2010. Pakistan wishes to avoid or at least minimize damage caused by floods. Indus River System has been supported by huge dams like Tarbela, barrages like Rasul and an extensive net-work of inundation canals. FFC was established in 1977 to fight against major floods of 1973 and 1976. NDMA was established in 2005 to fight against natural disasters. In the presence of both of these institutes Pakistan had to face the Super flood of 2010. In the recent times, both engineering and non engineering approaches are utilized for the flood mitigation. In Pakistan Flood Forecasting Network (FFN) is responsible for sending flood related information collected via satellite and other sources to every flood prone region of the country. Introduction of radars system, construction of irrigation infrastructure such as bunds and dams are also the efforts to fight against floods. In Pakistan, it has been the responsibility of the Ministry of Water and Power to issue flood forecasts as well flood Warnings and the Ministry has given this assignment to the flood commissioner. Telemetric system of WAPDA is one of the significant sources of the hydrological data for Pakistan. .