AJK-EPA took the initiative of monitoring different water systems throughout the AJK to estimate parameter of major concerns. The EPA laboratory has capacity of testing more than 20 different physio-chemical and bacteriological water quality parameters through standard methods, and comparing obtained values with permissible values given by World Health Organization (WHO) and National Drinking Water Quality Standards (NDWQS).
“The major objective of EPA laboratory is to assess the quality of drinking water at sources and in distribution networks”.
AJK-EPA Lab uses standard methods for analysis of water samples in the laboratory for physical, chemical and bacteriological parameters. The detail of the parameters and analysis methods adopted by AJK-EPA Lab are given below as in table-1:
|4||Conductivity||EU-TECH, Multi parameter apparatus, Model PCD650,Singapore|
|5||pH||EU-TECH, Multi parameter apparatus, Model PCD650,Singapore|
|7||Turbidity||Turbidity meter, HANNA instrument, Model HI-93703, Italy|
|8||TDS||EU-TECH, Multi parameter apparatus, Model PCD650, Singapore|
|9||Dissolve Oxygen (DO)||EU-TECH, Multi parameter apparatus, Model PCD650, Singapore|
|10||Calcium||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A, Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|11||Hardness||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A, Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|12||Magnesium||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A, Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|13||Iron||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A, Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|Non Metals /Trace and ultra-trace elements|
|14||Nitrate-NO3-||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A, Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|15||Nitrite –NO2-||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A, Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|16||Phosphate||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A, Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|17||Arsenic||Arsenic Test kit, Colorimetric method with test strips by MERCK, Germany|
|18||Chloride||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A ,Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|19||Fluoride||Spectroquant NOVA 60-A ,Photometric method by MERCK, Germany|
|20||Alkalinity||By titration method|
|21||Total Coliform||Ready cult, Water Check by MERCK, German|
In order to measure the validity of data generated from water quality analysis, quality control measures and standard practices are adopted. Quality Control Protocols are followed both in field and laboratory by adopting standard sampling and analytical methods using certified standard referencing for calibration, verification of calibration, reproducibility and cross analysis. Standardization and calibration of equipments for each parameter are carried out with certified referencing and standard methods, purchased from reputed companies
Standard methods & protocols were applied for collection of water sampling, recording and tabulation of data, analysis of water samples and development of GIS data base. The detail of methods used is given below:
1. Planning of Water sampling in the field
Planning session was arranged with Director General and Director AJK-EPA to streamline the schedule.
2. Team Composition
Field team was constituted comprising one Chemist, one Lab assistant and field assistant. The field team was trained for dataand samples collection in accordance with the standard procedure and was equipped with necessary tools.
3. Equipment Provided for Sample Collection
4. Check List of Activities during Collection of Samples
5. Check List of Activities after Collection of Samples
6. Data Collection and Compilation
The data collection forms and Lab reports generated were developed and finalized with consultation of Director General (AJK-EPA), Director (AJK-EPA) and Deputy Director Lab (Pak-EPA) to collect the necessary information and data about source/ spring. All the gathered data was scrutinized at head office AJK-EPA.
7. Water Quality mapping of spring
GIS techniques were used for this purpose; GPS coordinates were taken at each sampling site to identify the sampling position on map. GIS expert was given the task to supervise and prepare the water quality maps.
8. Sample Collection and Preservation
Water samples for physio-bio-chemical analysis were collected in polystyrene bottles of 1 liter capacities. Before collecting the samples, the bottles were washed properly and rinsed thoroughly 2-3 times first with water and then with distilled water. For bacterial analysis, samples were collected directly in sterilized containers provided with field testing kit (Water check, Redyult, MERCK). Boric acid was used as preservatives in the sampling bottles for nitrate and nitrogen before going to field.
Compliance monitoring is one of the key components EPA uses to ensure that the regulated community obeys environmental laws and regulations. It encompasses all regulatory agency activities performed to determine whether a facility (or group of facilities, such as plants related geographically, by sector, or corporate structure) is in compliance with applicable law. Compliance monitoring includes:
Inspections are an integral part of EPA’s compliance monitoring programs. They are an important tool for officially assessing compliance with environmental regulations and requirements. EPA and its regulatory partners conduct compliance inspections under the majority of statutory and regulatory program authorities.
Inspections are visits to a facility or site for the purpose of gathering information to determine whether it is in compliance. Inspections generally include pre-inspection activities such as obtaining general site information before entering the site. Other activities that may be conducted during the on-site visit include:
AJK –EPA divided the districts into North and South Zones North zone consist of Neelum, Muzaffarabad, Jhelum Valley, Bagh, Rawalakot and Haweli, while South Zone consist of Sudhnoti, Kotli, Mirpur and Bhimber.
Hydropower projects initiated in AJK includes Karot Hydropower Project, Gulpur Hydropower project, Azad Pattan, Mahl Hydropower Project, Kohala hydropower project, Neelum Jhelum Hydropower project, Jagran II and III, Jhing-I and Rihali II projects. Some of the projects near to its completion while others will be completed soon.
Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)/Initial Environmental Examination (IEE) is a process to evaluating the likely Environmental Impacts of a proposed project or development, taking into account inter related socio-economic, cultural and human-health impacts, both beneficial & adverse. In fact it is a co-relating tool between the sustainable development and environmental protections.
EIA/IEE section enforced under the EIA/IEE Regulations 2009, under section 11 of the Environment Protection Act 2000 in EPA-AJK. This section plays a vital role in the implementation of state development activities in environment friendly manners to achieve the sustainable development goals of the state. EIA/IEE Regulation 2009 clearly scheduled the projects as schedule-I(projects require initial environmental examination) and schedule-II (projects require Environmental impact assessment).
However, the agency can advise to prepare EIA of the project heavy serious environmental impact or project falls in Environmental sensitive area.