Wastewater Treatment in Pakistan: Issues, Challenges and Solutions

Fozia Parveen, Sher Jamal Khan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Currently able to treat only 1% of its wastewater, Pakistan is far from its commitment under the sustainable development goals (SDGs) to treat up to 50% of its wastewater. The rapid urbanization of cities without corresponding improvements in infrastructure to collect and treat wastewater leads to poor quality water and sanitation. The organizations responsible for wastewater treatment are also responsible for providing quality drinking water, i.e., WASA (Water and Sanitation Authorities). This has resulted in untreated wastewater being used for irrigation, and heavy contamination of ground and surface drinking water, thus leading to disease. Decentralized wastewater treatment plants and nature based systems need to be introduced to both cities and villages so that water can be reused in a healthy and sustainable way. Industries are now beginning to adhere to compliance standards while cities are becoming aware that open drains are not a long term solution to this problem. In short, Pakistan needs to consider the long-term benefits of wastewater treatment instead of its short-term costs, and make it a priority.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGlobal Issues in Water Policy
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media B.V.
Number of pages27
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Publication series

NameGlobal Issues in Water Policy
ISSN (Print)2211-0631
ISSN (Electronic)2211-0658


  • Compliance standards
  • Decentralized wastewater treatment
  • Membrane bioreactor plants in Pakistan
  • Rapid urbanization
  • Wastewater
  • Water and sanitation


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