NIO Events

NIO Events


Visit of Senator Dr. Karim Khawaja and NIO'S Comments on Sea Intrusion Jan 2016

NIO'S COMMENTS ON SEA INTRUSION


The recorded data on sea level rise (SLR) at Karachi and adjoining Indus deltaic area is based on the data collected over the past 100 years. The estimated rise is 1.2 mm/year and it is expected to double during the next 50 to 100 years, resulting in 20-50 cm rise in sea level (UN ESCAP, 1996). The adverse effect of sea level rise on the Pakistan coast is expected to be pronounced in the Indus delta because the delta is generally flat and low-lying.


There are no direct measurements on subsidence rates in the Indus delta, however, experience in other deltas indicate that subsidence rates at the delta must have increased due to lack of sediment flux. Indus delta could have a relative sea level rise of up to 8 to 10mm/yr as per the projected rate of global component of sea-level rise of up to 6mm/yr in the next century. If the present trends continue the Indus delta will ultimately establish a transgressive beach dominated by aeolian dunes, due to lack of sediment inputs and the high energy waves (Haq, 1999).


NIO is of the view that the Indus delta is experiencing sediment compaction like other major deltas of the world mainly due to sediment starvation and ground water extraction. However, no observed data is available to provide concrete validation of the compound impact of sea level rise and ground subsidence. The ground subsidence has already resulted in the sea water intrusion upstream to 80 km in the coastal areas of Thatta, Hyderabad and Badin districts. The primary impacts include the erosion of beaches, flooding and inundation of wetlands and lowlands, salinization of ground and surface waters, extended intrusion of sea water, and impact on mangrove ecosystem and coastal agriculture.


Long duration study is required to identify the vulnerability index of creek system, for which oceanographic observations are planned. The exact extent of the land loss has yet to be determined. The Ministry of Science & Technology has established a Seawater Intrusion (SWI) and Land subsidence (LS) Cell at NIO. The Cell is comprised of the scientists and officers of NIO, SUPARCO, Hydrography Department, Pakistan Navy, and the Ministry of Defence.


The acquisition of oceanographic, Remote sensing and coastline/bathymetric observations along the coast and adjacent areas are critical in devising control measures, and suggesting management plans.


Iincreased threats of cyclonic activity in the Arabian Sea is likely to make the two coastal provinces more vulnerable in terms of loss of life and property not only in the coastal areas but this may also extend inlands. Particularly under threat is Karachi, the largest city of the country and the hub of its industry (TFCC, 2010). In view of the scenario, and the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) and SUPARCO have jointly prepared a PSDP proposal which was submitted as a PC-1 " Monitoring The Sea Level Rise, Sea Water Intrusion And Land Subsidence In Indus Deltaic Creek System With Special Reference To Sindh Coastal Cities Flooding" to the Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of Pakistan. The main objectives are to undertake long term qualitative and quantitative data collection using in-situ observatories and Remote Sensing Technology with a focus to address this issue. Only after undertaking a detailed study, it would be possible for the Seawater Intrusion Cell to identify vulnerable spots along the Pakistan coastline and also to estimate/predict the extend of potential threat due to climate change and other natural threats.

6600 MW Power Park at Gadani, Balochistan – Marine Studies

6600 MW Power Park at Gadani, Balochistan

The Government of Pakistan (GoP) has plan to develop 6600 MW Power Park at Gadani, Balochistan which will house 10 660 MW Power Plants to be setup by private investors as Independent Power Plants (IPPs). The GoP has provided infrastructure/common facilities to prospective IPPs Location of the Power Park. National Engineering Services Pakistan (NESPAK) has been appointed as Consultant by Pakistan Power Park Management Company Limited (PPPMCL) for the project, that will include land acquistion, master planning, feasibility and detailed engineering required for the provision of all infra structure facilities for the Power Park. The Infrastructure facilities will include a dedicated Jetty for the power Park to handle the coal @ 25 MT/annum, and accommodate the vessel of minimum 125,000 coal carrier. It is estimated that at least 20 m water depth will be required to accommodate 125,000 ships. The National Institute of Oceanography based on NIO's past studies in the interest location carried out the following studies:

• Marine Ecology Study on the proposed area
• Impact on the sea environment for the seawater coming from the Power Plants
• The feasibility location of intake and outfall for cooling water along with the thermal Plume Study

NIO is of the view that the Indus delta is experiencing sediment compaction like other major deltas of the world mainly due to sediment starvation and ground water extraction. However, no observed data is available to provide concrete validation of the compound impact of sea level rise and ground subsidence. The ground subsidence has already resulted in the sea water intrusion upstream to 80 km in the coastal areas of Thatta, Hyderabad and Badin districts. The primary impacts include the erosion of beaches, flooding and inundation of wetlands and lowlands, salinization of ground and surface waters, extended intrusion of sea water, and impact on mangrove ecosystem and coastal agriculture.


The "Marine Ecology Study on the Proposed area" report presents information from the NIO archives, published and unpublished report, research publications, and field surveys (inter-tidal zone, offshore upto the 20 m depth contour, Churna Island - critical habitat). The survey was carried out during May-June, November-December 2014.

CHINESE SCIENTISTS VISIT - October 2015

The National Institute of Oceanography organized an International workshop on Seawater Intrusion on 20 October 2015. Follow-up of this event included a field trip on 21 October to the Keti Bundar, Hajamro creek area jointly carried out by NIO and the Chinese scientists with the support of the Commander Coast, Pakistan Navy.


On 22 October the Chinese scientist spent a whole day deliberations on areas of cooperation and identifying new avenues of research collaboration. The afternoon session comprised of bilateral discussion comprising of evaluating progress since the signing of the MoUs and modalities of submitting proposals. The Chinese side was led by Prof. Dr. Huang Daji Deputy Director General, Second Institute of Oceanography-State Oceanic Administration, P.R. China and the Pakistan side was led by Dr. Asif Inam Director General, National Institute of Oceanography. Mr. Khan Wazir Khan Assistant Scientific Advisor (IL Wing, MoST was also present during all the proceedings. The meeting was attended by all scientists of NIO and the visiting scientists of the P.R. China.

Remembering the 1945 Makran Tsunami

Tsunamis waves of local origin, which account for most fatalities due to tsunami worldwide, pose a natural hazard on shores of the Arabian Sea. The main source of this hazard is the Makran subduction zone, an active boundary between converging tectonic plates that slants gently northward beneath the Arabian Sea coasts of Iran and Pakistan. Its seaward edge tracks the foot of the continental slope for a distance of 800 kilometres (refer to map below). Were the zone to break along its entire length, the resulting earthquake might be in a range of magnitude 8.7-9.2, and the ensuing tsunami would likely exceed 10 metres in height along most coasts of northern Oman, southeast Iran, Pakistan, and northwest India.


This worst-case scenario scales up the Makran earthquake and tsunami of 1945. The earthquake, of magnitude 8.1, resulted from fault rupture in an eastern part of the subduction zone along what is now the coast of Pakistan.


The rupture started offshore of Pasni and extended beneath Ormara. The ensuing tsunami has been ascribed in part to submarine slides5,11,19, and trapping of its waves on the continental shelf has also been proposed. The shaking and fooding in 1945 occured early on 28 November local time. Thirteen deaths attributed to the tsunami were confrmed in Bombay (Mumbai).

(... 1945-Makran-tsunami-booklet).

Seawater Intrusion Workshop, October 2015

NIO has organized an International workshop on “Seawater Intrusion Affecting Coast, Ecosystem and livelihoods” on 20 October 2015 at Marriott Hotel, Karachi. The objective of the workshop was to address the issues related to seawater intrusion in the coastal areas and to explore possible measures to reduce or lessen its impacts through mutual sharing of experiences and information within scientific community, policy makers and management responsible. Delegations from Second Institute of Oceanography, Hangzhou and State Key Laboratory for Estuarine and Coastal Research, Shanghai, China are participated in the workshop.


Mr. Abid Hussain, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Science & Technology was the chief guest of the workshop.


Dr. Naeem Ahmed of NIO briefly introduced the theme of the workshop. Director General of NIO, Dr. Asif Inam, Dr. Huang Daji (SIO), Vice Admiral Perviz Asghar (NCMPR), Prof. Dr. Xu Dongfeng (SIO), Dr. M. Ashraf (PCRWR), Dr.Yang Hui (SIO) Prof. Dr. Zhanghua Wang (SKLEC), Dr. A R. Tabrez (COMSATS), Dr. Samina Kidwai (NIO), Dr. Haider Hasan (NED), Dr. Nuzhat Khan (NIO), Prof. Dr. Shahid Amjad (IoBM), Prof. Dr. Sarfraz H. Solangi (Sindh University) , Saeed Ahmed Bablani (Sindh University), Dr. Hui Wu (SKLEC), Mehwish Shafi Khan (SUPARCO), Shella Bano (PCRWR), Mudassar Umar (SUPARCO), Ibrahim Zia (NIO) also spoke and shared their work on seawater intrusion.

NIO Board of governors meeting October 2015

Minister chaired the meeting of BoG of NIO

Fifth meeting of Board of Governors (BoG) of National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) was held at the NIO Head office, Karachi on 16th October 2015. The meeting was Chaired by the Honorable Rana Tanweer Hussain, Federal Minister for Science and Technology, Government of Pakistan.

The Minister appreciated the efforts undertaken by NIO in successfully getting approved Pakistan’s case for Continental Shelf Extension beyond 200 Nautical Miles from United Nations with in a total cost of Rs. 500 millions. The extended area of 50,000 sq. km now also means the extension of our limits of research. Therefore, NIO now has the responsibility once again to remain focused in exploration of the extended Economic Zone and lead the efforts once again for the benefit and uplift of our country.

The Minister also had a brief meeting with technical team members of Continental Shelf Extension Program of Pakistan. The Minister appreciated the R&D efforts currently being undertaken by NIO in collaboration of national and international stakeholders for the development of Marine Resources for the economic uplift of the Country and emphasized on launching of new projects for socio-economic uplift of the all Pakistanis. He ensured The Government's full cooperation in achieving NIO's goals and targets set forth in Vision 2025 and our International obligations.

He supported NIO's request for the acquisition of a dedicated research platform that was critical for any oceanographic Institution and emphasized that new and fresh opportunities are arising from the announcement of the Pak-China Economic Corridor and therefore it was paramount that we all contribute towards building our great Nation. The Federal Minister further directed NIO to act upon the recommendation given by the Senate’s Standing Committee on Science and Technology regarding the sea water intrusion and land subsidence so that impacts on the coastal areas of Pakistan could be minimized.

NIO - SUPARCO joint field work september 2015

NIO and SUPARCO Teams collaboration in studies for Flood and Environment Assessment in Coastal Sindh

A joint team of NIO and SUPARCO on the 8th September 2015 carried out a field visit of coastal Sindh. NIO has been regularly visiting the coastal area of Sindh. Two surveys were carried out on the 25th July and 12th August 2015 to assess the flood conditions at various fixed stations (Kharo Chann, Jangesir, Keti Bundar, Sajawal Bridge) established for monitoring. Observations were recorded and samples were collected. Freshwater conditions were observed at 3 out of 4 stations. The salinity levels at Keti Bundar was 20 (25 July 2015) and 12 (12th August & 8th Septemberfor 2015), the salinity levels are maintained at Keti Bundar. At the Sajawal Bridge station where the river had been in full flow on 12 August 2015 the river bed was exposed and the water flow was limited to a shallow stream level.

SUPARCO and NIO are collaborating to monitor the coastal areas of Sindh and in this connection, SUPARCO established a weather station and an air sampler at the Ghorabari station of NIO. The objective is to collect observations for a full year with regular intervals of 6- 8 weeks.

Tropical Cyclone June 2015

Cyclone Alert Tropical Cyclone in Northwest Arabian Sea; ASHOBAA

12th June Alert from PMD The Tropical Cyclone (ASHOBAA) over northwest Arabian Sea has slightly tracked further westward during past six hours and now lies centred at Lat 20.8N and Long 60.0E about 150 km east-northeast of Masirah, Island (Oman). The Tropical Cyclone is likely to weaken into a depression during next 12 hrs and cross Oman coast by 12 June morning. Due to high tidal flow the sea conditions are likely to remain rough along Makran western-most coast (Gwadar and Jiwani) accompanied with occasional gusty winds and maximum surge of 10 ft. The Cyclone Warning Centre (Karachi) of Pakistan Meteorological Department has advised the fishermen of Balochistan as: Fishermen of Balochistan are advised not to venture in open sea till 12 June evening.

Ocean Day June 2015

World Oceans Day – 8 June
Theme - World Oceans Day (8 June 2015) - “Healthy Oceans, healthy planet”

The National Institute of Oceanography celebrates the World Ocean Day 2015 by joining the world community again and through its reiterated pledge to support activities of civic consciousness of the ocean environments and its various facets. Dr. Asif Inam, Director General and several scientists spoke on important national interest avenues and provided once again their commitment to ocean research for national development. The Ocean Day is extra special for NIO this year as the Nation celebrates the extension of its Continental Shelf boundaries and with it, its increased potentials. The day offers an opportunity to recognize the considerable challenges we face in maintaining their capacity to regulate the global climate, supply essential ecosystem services and provide sustainable livelihoods and safe recreation. Furthering our emphasis on individual and collective duty to protect the marine environment and carefully manage its resources. It is vital that the Nation comes together to:
- Identify opportunities for inter-linkages
- enhance partnerships to achieve targets and development goals
- Generate new public and private sources of finance
- Improve the capacity for implementing and monitoring national policies
- Create opportunities for the coordination
- Increase use of information and communication technologies to enhance effective communication and information sharing.

In 2008, the United Nations General Assembly decided that, as from 2009, 8 June would be designated by the United Nations as “World Oceans Day” (Resolution 63/111, paragraph 171). Many countries have celebrated World Oceans Day following the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, which was held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.

The oceans are essential to food security and the health and survival of all life, power our climate and are a critical part of the biosphere. The official designation of World Oceans Day is an opportunity to raise global awareness of the current challenges faced by the international community in connection with the oceans.

The Oceans cover 70% of the planet, and the significance of the oceans is un debated. It regulates our climate, feeds millions, produces oxygen and is home to a variety of wildlife that serves humanity in a variety of ways. Human activities are taking a terrible toll on the world’s oceans and seas. Vulnerable marine ecosystems, such as corals, and important fisheries are being damaged by over-exploitation, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, destructive fishing practices, invasive alien species and marine pollution, especially from land-based sources. Increased sea temperatures, sea-level rise and ocean acidification caused by climate change add to it. Safe, healthy and productive seas and oceans are integral to human well-being, economic security and sustainable development and prosperity of nations.

Continental Shelf Extension brief 2015

UNITED NATIONS COMMISSION ACCEPTS PAKISTAN’S CASE ON THE EXTENTED CONTINENTAL SHELF FOR PAKISTAN

The UN Commission on Limits of Continental Shelf hason Friday 21st March 2015 finally announced adoption of the recommendations for Extension of Pakistan Continental Shelf. With this Pakistan’s continental shelf limits stands extended from 200 to 350 nautical miles, giving Pakistan sovereign rights over additional areaof 50,000sq km beyond Pakistan’s Exclusive Economic Zone thus increasing Pakistan’s maritime area from 240,000 sq km at present to about 290,000 sq km.

Earlier realizing the significance of Continental Shelf Extension, the Ministry of Science & Technology initiatedthe Projectback in 2004, to work on the details required for the submission of its case to the United Nations under the Law of the Sea to which Pakistan is a signatory since 1997. Government of Pakistan entrusted the responsibility of this national Project to the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO), under the administrative control of Ministry of Science & Technology. The NIO along with technical support of all the stake holders; like Ministries of Foreign Affairs,Defence, Hydrography Department of PN, Law, Justice & Human Right, Science & Technology, Petroleum and Natural Resources and the Planning Divisionetcafter completed the entire requirements and Technical and Scientific Guidelines of the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf for submission of Pakistan’s Case for the extension of its Continental Shelf to the United Nations on 30th April 2009.

The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) defines the different maritime zones and regulates marine sovereignty rights and rights of use, among others. The juridical Continental Shelf of a coastal state comprises the submerged natural prolongation of its land territory, and consists of the seabed and subsoil of the shelf, the slope and the rise. According to Article 76, coastal states had - under certain geological conditions - extended their juridical Continental Shelf and thus gain marine sovereignty rights beyond the 200-nautical-mile limit of the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Within the extended zone, a state has among other things the exclusive right of exploring and exploiting non-living-resources of the seabed and subsoil as well as sedentary species, whereas fishing rights remain limited to the EEZ.

Pakistan gave a formal presentation to the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) on 16 August 2013 at United Nations, New York. Pakistan demonstrated that high quality bathymetric and seismic data were acquired during Pakistan’s Continental Shelf Programme and the case submitted to the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf is based on concrete scientific evidence. Further the Pakistan’s scientific team was well supported both onshore and offshore by leading international experts. The Chairman Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf,established a seven member sub-commission to review Pakistan’s submission. In the yearlong process Pakistan technical delegation held multiple interactions with the UN Commission. The Sub-commission undertook critical review of Pakistan Submission and detailed analysis of the data submitted by Pakistan as per article 76 and Scientific & Technical Guidelines. During each interaction Pakistan delegation was posed number of technical questions and the preciseness and speed with which Pakistan delegation responded to each query helped in culminating the whole process successfully within a year, while some other states have taken more than 3 years to complete this process.

Members of Pakistan technical delegation who pursued Pakistan submission during 2013-15 include are Commodore Zafar Mansoor Tipu SI(M) Judge Advocate General of Pakistan Navy, Dr Asif Inam Director General National Institute of Oceanography and also Director of Pakistan Continental Shelf Project, Commander Salman Ahmed Khan Pakistan Navy Hydrographic Department, Mr Mohsin Tabrez and Mr Khalid Mehmoodof National Institute of Oceanography.

The Subcommission established to examine Pakistan’s submission presented the recommendations to the main Commission during its 37th Session on 10th March 2015. On the same date Pakistan also made a formal concluding Presentation on the submission. The presentation of the Sub-commission and Pakistan’s delegation covered all technical and legal aspects of the submission, in conformity with relevant clauses of the Law of the Sea - UNCLOS.

Pakistan has become the first country in the region amongst India, Oman, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Myanmar, to have the sea limits extended and secured the vast non-living mineral and oil & gas resources of the extended area.

Continental Shelf Extension Achievement - Mar 2015

PAKISTAN’S CONTINENTAL SHELF EXTENSION PROGRAMME

Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) the continental shelf is that part of the seabed over which a coastal State exercises sovereign rights with regard to the exploration and exploitation of natural resources including oil and gas deposits as well as other minerals and biological resources of the seabed. The legal continental shelf extends out to a distance of 200 nautical miles from its coast, or further if the shelf naturally extends beyond that limit.

Where the continental shelf extends beyond 200 nautical miles a State is required by UNCLOS (Article 76) to make a submission to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS). This submission sets out the coordinates of the outer limits of the shelf and is accompanied by technical and scientific data to support the claim. The Commission assesses the limits and data submitted by the coastal State and makes recommendations. The outer limits of the continental shelf established by a coastal State based on these recommendations are final and binding.

Submissions for an extended Continental Shelf were required to be filed directly with the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) with detailed marine geo-scientific data describing e. g. the shape of the continental margin, the location of the foot of the continental slope and the sediment thickness. Within the extended zone, a state has among other things the exclusive right of exploring and exploiting non-living-resources of the seabed and subsoil as well as sedentary species, whereas fishing rights remain limited to the EEZ.

Pakistan ratified the Convention on 26 February 1997. The Convention entered into force for Pakistan on 28 March 1997. Under the UNCLOS Pakistan has an Exclusive Economic Zone extending up to 200 nautical miles and covering an area of 240,000 sq km. Government of Pakistan entrusted the responsibility of this national Project to the National Institute of Oceanography, Pakistan under the administrative control of Ministry of Science & Technology. The Government of Pakistan also formulated an Inter-Ministerial “Technical Evaluation Committee” (with representatives from Ministry of Science & Technology, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Law, Justice and Human Rights) for monitoring and supervising the Pakistan Continental Shelf Programme. The Continental Shelf Extension Cell (comprising of scientists of National Institute of Oceanography and hydrographers of Pakistan Navy) was established at National Institute of Oceanography for undertaking requisite scientific data collection, compilation and preparation of submission along with foreign consultants.

The Continental shelf project activities till Submission underwent typical 3 phases: Desktop Study, Data Collection and Preparation of Submission. Scientists from National Institute of Oceanography and Hydrographers from Pakistan Navy Hydrographic Department worked dedicatedly in all phases. This led to the preparation of a comprehensive and high quality Submission. Which met all the requirements of the Commission. In order to ensure that data collection and preparation of Submission is of desired standards as set forth by the Commission on the Limits of Continental Shelf, consultation from international experts was also included in all 3 phases.

In the first phase a desk top study was carried out to synthesize available data and identify the requirements of additional data. Extensive surveys for collection of variety of data were undertaken in second phase. To facilitate the construction of Outer Limits of continental shelf, Baseline Geodetic survey of the entire length 990 km long Coastline was carried out. To map the seabed topography and also to identify Base of the Slope area and to locate Foot of the Slope more than 11000 kms of high quality Multibeam Bathymetric data was collected over the Murray Ridge and Indus Fan. High Resolution Acoustic Profiling was also done during the Multibeam survey.

Since Pakistan was blessed with huge pile of Indus River derived sediments deposited over the seafloor therefore to measure sediment thicknesses and demonstrate its continuity more than 4000 kms of industry standard 2D Multi-Channel Seismic survey was undertaken. Submission of the Outer Limits of Pakistan Continental Shelf was prepared in Phase III. A Canadian firm provided technical assistance, which was supplemented by a legal review undertaken by the Marine and Environmental Law Institute, Dalhousie University, Canada.

After completing the entire requirements as per the Technical and Scientific Guidelines of the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf the submission document along with all charts, maps and digital data was delivered by NIO to Pakistan’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York on 26th March 2009. Later, on the instruction of the Ministry of Science & Technology the Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the United Nation submitted Pakistan’s Case for the extension of its Continental Shelf to the United Nations on 30th April 2009.

A five member Pakistan delegation led by the Federal Secretary for Ministry of Science & Technology gave a presentation to the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) on 16 August 2013 at United Nations, New York. The Chairman Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf, on 26 August 2013, officially informed the Pakistan Mission at the United Nations that a seven member subcommission has been established to review Pakistan’s submission. The Subcommission undertook critical review of Pakistan Submission and detailed analysis of the data submitted by Pakistan. During this process 18 documents were exchanged between Subcommission and Pakistan delegation. In conclusion of the year long process, draft recommendations prepared by Subcommission were agreed to by Pakistan delegation and unanimously finalized by the Subcommission.

On 10 March 2015, Pakistan Delegation made a final presentation to the 21 member Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf. The presentation was greatly appreciated by the Commission. At the end of the 37th Session, the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf formally adopted the Recommendation and accepted Pakistan’s Case for the extension of its Continental Shelf from 200 nautical miles to the maximum 350 nautical miles. The total maritime area gained by Pakistan is more than 50,000 sq km.

Five Members Technical Team
Dr. Asif Inam, Director General, Project Director,
National Institute of Oceanography

Mr. Mohsin Tabrez,
GIS Analyst NIO

Mr.Khalid Mehmood Awan,
Geophysicist, NIO

Cdre Z.M. Tipu TI (M)
Judge Advocate General of Pakistan Navy

Cdr Salman Ahmed Khan
Deputy Hydrographer Pakistan Navy

Minister message - March 2015

MESSAGE FROM THE FEDERAL MINISTER FOR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY MR. RANA TANVEER HUSSAIN ON ACCEPTANCE OF THE PAKISTAN CLAIM ATHE UN FOR EXTENSION OF THE LIMITS OF PAKISTAN CONTINENTAL SHELF 21st March 2015

It is indeed a pleasure for me to share with peoples of my country this extremely important, historic and Joyful moment for Pakistan as the Claim for Pakistan’s extended continental shelf stands accepted by the UN Commission today. We are thankful to the UN Commission for adoption of the Recommendations in favor of Pakistan. Today is for in fact acknowledging the efforts made by all of the stakeholders in achieving the objectives set-forth towards acceptance of Pakistan claim by the Commission. The Ministry for Science & Technology early in 2004 had undertaken the Pakistan Continental Shelf Programme with invaluable support from Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Pakistan Navy Hydrographic Department. Actually this was an effort made by Pakistan as a follow up of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that Pakistan had ratified earlier on 26 February 1997. The Convention is in fact a great success of collective wisdom in the history of humans. The Government of Pakistan has supported the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) for one of the most prestigious Project of Pakistan’s Continental Shelf Extension. Pakistan submitted its case for the extension on 30 April 2009, and gave formal presentation to the Commission on 16 August 2013. Consequently the Subcommission for Pakistan Submission was established on 26 August 2013. During the past five Sessions of the Commission held from 2013-15 , Pakistan technical team held 12 meetings with the Subcommission. Exhaustive interactions with Subcommission took place, which included discussions, data processing, preparation of maps & figures and finalization of reports & presentations. In conclusion after a long process, draft recommendations prepared by Subcommission were agreed to by Pakistan delegation and unanimously finalized by the Subcommission and now the Recommendations were unanimously adopted by the members of the Commission.

Extension in the continental shelf of Pakistan would Insha Allah add another 50, 000 sq km in our existing 240,000 sq km maritime area of Pakistan and thus will provide huge seabed resources. Further the data acquired during the project would provide a reliable and firm database and foundation, essential for future marine research and exploration of living and non-living marine resources. The Ministry of Science and Technology has in fact been pursuing national agenda to coordinate and promote research in Oceanography and marine sciences for protections and conservation of marine environment including exploration, exploitation and management of marine resources within maritime zones, and for all matters connected with this field. Pakistan blessed with its coastal of 1050 km along the Arabia Sea and its strategic location provide us a competitive advantage of attracting business and investment opportunities to serve as Regional Hub and potential gateway to the Central Asian Republics (CARs), China, Middle East and South Asia. The surveys conducted during the Pakistan continental shelf programme has provided enough data and information that I am sure would support directly to the petroleum and mineral sector in general and particularly to the offshore maritime industry/market. .On behalf of the Pakistan technical team I may like to acknowledge the Subcommission as well as all its members individually for their thorough analysis and scrutiny of Pakistan’s submission and the high level of interest and momentum that was maintained. The interaction of Pakistan’s team with the Subcommission was in a highly professional yet cordial atmosphere which helped in finalization of the recommendations agreed to by all the parties. It would contribute directly to the petroleum and mineral sector in general and to the offshore maritime industry/market in particular I congratulate the National Institute of Oceanography and hydrographic department of Pakistan Navy as well as all other stake holders involved in this project for their dedication. The vast potential of untapped ocean resources demands our active role and responsibility in strengthening oceanographic Research & Development in Pakistan, thus boosting the economy of this country.

Minister chaired MoST meeting- March 2015

MINISTER FOR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY CHAIRS A MEETING REGARDING THE RESTRUCTURING OF MINISTRY AND ITS ORGANIZATION

A meeting to review the overall performance of Ministry of Science and Technology and it's organizations was held under the chairmanship of Rana Tanveer Hassan, Minister for Science and Technology and Defense Production. Among others the meeting was attended by Dr. Sania Nishter, .CEO Heartfile and, ex minister for science and technology, Dr. Shabir A. Khan, Sloan Scholar, Dr. Shaukat Hameed, Coordinator General COMSTECH, Dr. Junaid zaidi, Rector COMSATS Institute of Information Technology.

Mr kamran Ali Qureshi, Secretary Science and Technology in the opening remarks explained that the present government was taking serious efforts for restructuring of the organizations in order to enhance their productivity. Recently Ministry has appointed heads of ten Research and Development organizations through a transparent mechanism.

In the meeting the overall performance of National Institute of Oceanography, Karachi, Council for Works and Housing Research, Karachi, Fuel Research Centre, Karachi and Leather Research centre, Karachi were discussed in details and programme for their rightsizing was finalized.

It has been unanimously agreed that Ministry may allocate additional resources to NIO to becomes regional center of excellence. The LRC has very potential to enhance its role in promotion of quality leather export, therefore it also need to be strengthened. The performance of CWHR and FRC have been categorized as not up to the mark and any further investment would be a futile exercise. Over the period these organizations failed to develop core competence, Therefore the Ministry may consider to dissolve these organizations.

Pishukan Fish landing Survey-2014

Bathymetric Survey
Pishukan Fish Landing Jetty

On a request of Gwadar Development Authority (GDA), the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) carried out detailed bathymetric survey of the Pishukan Fish Harbour. The harbour is facing problem of siltation therefore to make it useful for small and large fishing boats, the Gwadar Development Authority decided to dredge the silt deposited within the jetty area. As a pre-requisite of a dredging, two bathymetric surveys are required to be conducted to determine the volume of silt that need to be dredged before the dredging and after the dredging.

NIO carried out the initial survey in February 2013. This report contains the details of the bathymetric survey and the data acquired. This report also contains the volume of sand at a pre-dredged stage. A comparison of present bathymetric data with the survey conducted by NIO in February 2013 is also included in this report.

Churna Island Survey- 2014

Ecological Survey around the Churna Island

The Churna Island (24 53.48N 66 36.16E) has a small coral reef and is ecologically significant and supports a rich biodiversity. The island is triangular and the dimensions are 1.5 x 1.5 x 0.8 kilometers. The protected site of the island is also a site for recreational diving and angling. Earlier studies (Kazmi & Karmi 1988) reported small patches of living coral colonies around the Churna Island, but no detailed studies are recorded. The Churna Island is one of the five site proposed as the Marine and Coastal Protected Areas on the Pakistan coast during the Regional Resources Coordination and Mobilization Workshop (2006).

NIO recently conducted a geo-referenced dive survey (Manta Tow and Transect-Quadrate method) covering the entire area around the Churna Island under the 6600 MW Power Park at Gadani Balochistan EIA (Marine Ecology) project. The survey will form a detailed baseline of the coral, surrounding ecosystem.

Charna Island is a small island located in the Arabian Sea off the coast of Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan. It is situated northwest of a fishing settlement Mubarak Village. Mubarak Village (Mubarak Goth), is located some 60 km from Karachi on Hawks Bay-Mubarak Goth Road. It is famous for the marine life around it, which includes barracuda, Narrow-barred Spanish mackerel, cobia, Dorado, Tuna, angel fish, sea urchin, sea fan, oyster, ray fish and rare green turtle.

Detailed analysis is underway to form scientific publications and future collaborative research initiatives.

The meeting of Technical Advisory Committee(TAC) of NIO

The meeting of Technical Advisory Committee of NIO

The second meeting of the TECHNICAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE of NIO was convened at the National Institute of Oceanography on 3rd June 2014 at 11:00 AM. The meeting was chaired by Dr. Monawwar Saleem Director General National Institute of Oceanography.

The agenda of the meeting was
i. Overview of Research Activities of NIO
ii. Future Research Programmes of NIO
iii. Any other item with the permission of Chairman

Director General Dr. Monawwar Saleem briefly describe ongoing research project of the institute and research collaboration with Second Institute of Oceanography, SIOSOA China. He also answers to all the queries of the committee members. Committee members satisfied with performance of the Institute but suggest that institute should collaborate with other countries and start further international research projects.

The following TAC members attended the meeting:
i. Mr. Iqbal Ahmed Khosa, Secretary, Fisheries Department, Government of Balochistan
ii. Cdr. Salman Ahmed, Deputy Hydrographer, Pakistan Navy
iii. Haji Wali Muhammad, General Manager, Fishermen’s Cooperative Society
iv. Mr. Muhammad Ali Taher, Representative Director General, Geological Survey of Pakistan. Government of Pakistan
v. Syed Muhammad Iftikhar Zaidi, Fishery Development Board, Chairman People Fisheries (Pvt.) Ltd.
vi. Mr. Akhtar Ali, Fishermen's Cooperative
vii. Syed Moazzam Ali, NIO

NIO Celebrating 5th World Ocean Day on 10th June, 2013

NIO Celebrating 5th World Ocean Day on 10th June, 2013

Oceans cover 70% of the Earth’s surface and are essential to humanity; providing food security, health and survival to all life, power our climate and are a critical part of the biosphere. In 2008, United Nations General Assembly decided that from 2009 onwards 8 June was designated as the “World Oceans Day”, through a UN Resolution 63/111, paragraph 171, adopted on 8 December, 2008. In order to demonstrate solidarity with the international community, this year again the National Institute of Oceanography organized a one day seminar to celebrate the role of oceans in our lives and to raise the awareness of the current challenges faced by the international community in connection with the oceans

The Dr. A.R. Tabrez, Director General, National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) delivered his welcome address introducing the significance of the day and the background under which the United Nation in December 2008 declared June 8 from 2009 onwards as the “World Oceans Day”. He further elaborated the UN theme for this year which is “OCEANS & PEOPLE”, and spoke about the importance of the oceans.

Other distinguished speakers included Mr. Javed Jabbar who kindly consented to accept the role of the Chief Guest, while delivering Key Note Address acknowledged the value of the oceans in terms of being the only planet in the Universe to have surface water. He stressed the need to pool all national forces to work towards the improving environmental conditions in general and oceans especially.

Prof. Dr. Shahana Urooj Kazmi, Dean Faculty of Science, University of Karachi gave a talk on “Ocean Biotechnology”. She highlighted different sea species who Pakistan could utilize more effectively to ensure food security in the years to come. Mr. Moin Raza Khan, Deputy Managing Director, Pakistan Petroleum Limited presented a talk titled “Current Challenges Faced by Oil & Gas Exploration Companies in Off-Shore Areas”. He stressed that the offshore areas of Pakistan deserve more efforts in terms of drilling and hoped that the potential available in the offshore area of Pakistan could yield success if tried for unconventional targets.

Mr. Mahmood Akhtar Cheema, Country Representative, IUCN delivered a talk entitled “Role of Mangroves in Regulating Climate Change” he highlighted the contribution made by IUCN in the development and preservation of mangrove forests as the density of mangrove forests in Pakistan is very less as compare to other regional countries. Mr. Paul Fanning, FAO’s Chief Technical Advisor to Fishery Resource Appraisal Project, Marine Fisheries Department, Government of Pakistan, spoke on “Challenges to Fisheries” and how fisheries and aquaculture meets the challenges of food security. He briefed the audience about the preliminary findings from the recent Pakistan’s fishery stock assessment; practices and pressures that the industry currently experiences. He emphasized the importance of management and sustainable practices to ensure a healthy fishery sector.

The one day seminar to celebrate the World Oceans Day 2013, which is the fifth year running, organized by the National Institute of Oceanography was well attended by over 100 representatives from more than 20 organizations belonging to the federal and provincial governments; Pakistan Navy, autonomous, semi-autonomous bodies, academia (various universities and colleges), non-governmental environmental organizations, private enterprises and the media.

In the end, the workshop coordinator Dr. Asif Inam from NIO delivered the vote of thanks, appreciating the participation of the various organizations and individuals, and finally stage secretary Dr. Hina Baig concluded the program, hoping that the august g athering convenes again next year 2014, to celebrate the 6th - World Oceans Day.

Visit of Senate Standing Committee for Science and Technology

Visit of Senate Standing Committee for Science and Technology

Senate standing Committee for Science and Technology visited National Institute of Oceanography on 26th May 2014. Prof. Sajid Mir is the Committee Chairperson, other members of the committee are senator Almas Parveen, senator Farah Aqil, senator Mufti Abdul Sattar, senator Naseema Ehsan, senator Karim Ahmed Khawaja, senator Hidayat Ullah and Secretary Committee Zarghona Shabbir. Committee visited all the Research Labs of the Institute and appreciate the ongoing research of the institute under Director General Dr. Monawwar Saleem.

Director General Dr. Monawwar Saleem briefly describe ongoing research project of the institute and research collaboration with Second Institute of Oceanography, SIOSOA China. He also answers to all the queries of the committee members. Committee members satisfied with performance of the Institute but suggest that institute should collaborate with other countries and start further international research projects.

Bilateral Workshop under the Executive Agreement of Joint Research between NIO Pakistan and East China Normal University on Estuarine and Coastal Studies,SKLEC, ECNU, June 24-30, 2013, Shanghai, China

Bilateral Workshop under the Executive Agreement of Joint Research between NIO Pakistan and East China Normal University on Estuarine and Coastal Studies,SKLEC, ECNU, June 24-30, 2013, Shanghai, China

A bilateral Workshop at State Key Laboratory of Estuarine Coastal Research (SKLEC) ECNU Shanghai China was held during 24-30 June 2013. Eight NIO scientists participated and presented their research papers. They also discussed future research programmes/projects with NIO

Identification of Shark species occurring in Pakistan held at NIO Pakistan

Identification of Shark species occurring in Pakistan held at NIO Pakistan

It was observed that shark landings have been seriously dropped in Pakistan and many species which used to be common in Pakistan are not seen anymore. In order to fully understand the shark distribution and abundance as well as their role in marine ecosystem in Pakistan, National Institute of Oceanography hosted two day workshop on "Identification of Shark species occurring in Pakistan", organized by WWF-Pakistan and Pakistan Wetland Programme, between 25th & 26th April, 2012 at Karachi. The resource person for this workshop was Ms. Dareen Almojil, the Persian Gulf Area Representative of Shark Conservation Society.

Executive Programme of co-operation between the Second Institute of Oceanography, State Oceanic Administration, China and the National Institute of Oceanography, Pakistan

Executive Programme of co-operation between the Second Institute of Oceanography, State Oceanic Administration, China and the National Institute of Oceanography, Pakistan

A Programme of Cooperation in the field of Marine Sciences & Technology was signed between China’s Second Institute of Oceanography (SIO) administratively attached with State Oceanic Administration (SOA) of China and the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) Pakistan. In this regard, a high-level Chinese Scientists delegation of the SIO visited the NIO on 8th March, 2012. The delegation also visited the Ministry of Science & Technology (MoST) and held a wrap-up meeting with Mr. Akhlaq Ahmed Tarar, the Secretary MoST here in Islamabad on 9th March, 2012. The Federal Secretary of Science & Technology, and the Deputy Ambassador of China to Pakistan Mr. Zhan Shilin, witnessed the signing ceremony of the agreement. Dr. A. R. Tabrez, the Director General of NIO and Dr. Zhang Haishang, the Director General of SIO signed the Programme of Cooperation.

Through this agreement, the two sides will be establishing close cooperation for addressing the issues related to socio-economic development of the coastal areas of Pakistan. NIO would explore the possibility of getting technological assistance in numbers of NIO’s projects from SIO.

There are many variations of but the majority have suffered alteration in some form, by injected humour, or randomised words which looks.
  •   St 47, Block 1, Clifton,
         Karachi-75600, Pakistan
  •   +92 21 99251172-78
  •   +92 21 99251179
  • niopk.gov.pk@gmail.com

About NIO

The National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) is located in Karachi. It was established in 1981 by the Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of Pakistan (MoST). Its Head Office is at Clifton Karachi, with three sub-stations at Gwadar, Sonmiani and Ghora Bari.


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