SURVEY AND CHARTING COVERAGE OF COASTAL AREAS
Systematic surveys of coastal areas having depths up to 200 m have been completed. Accordingly, a series of charts covering all Pakistani waters has been published. These surveys and charts have rendered Pakistani waters safe for maritime trade. These efforts shall support avoidance of maritime disasters which otherwise might compel the nation to pay heavy price on environmental issues. Moreover, the same data is being utilized as baseline data for various other marine/maritime applications and developing coastal infrastructure.
IDENTIFICATION OF SITES FOR PORTS AND HARBOURS
PNHD has contributed in blue economy through mapping to support safe navigation of merchant ships and maritime security operations. In addition, initial surveys and feasibility studies conducted by the department played vital role in site identification/development of ports at Bin Qasim, Gwadar, Ormara, Chalna (East Pakistan/Bangladesh before 1971) etc.
EXTENSION OF CONTINENTAL SHELF
The project for extension of Pakistan’s continental shelf officially commenced in 2005 with Ministry of Science and Technology as lead ministry. Being an important stakeholder, PNHD remained attached with this project right from its inception. Scientists from NIO and PNHD worked together for various phases of this claim preparation. Pakistan submitted its claim with UN Commission on the Limits of Continental Shelf (UNCLCS) on 30 Apr 09. The commission approved extension of our shelf to 350 NM in Mar 2015. With this approval, Pakistan has become the first country in North Indian Ocean to have successfully achieved extension in outer limits of continental shelf.
MARITIME BOUNDARY DELIMITATION
PNHD played an important role in successful resolution of maritime boundaries with Myanmar (Naaf River / East Pakistan), Iran and Oman. Moreover, joint survey of Sir Creek by Pakistani and Indian hydrographic setups was also carried out in 2007 to support resolution of Sir Creek issue and subsequent finalization of maritime boundary. The department also assisted Federal government in declaration of baseline in 1996, based on which all maritime zones of the country are declared.
AVAILABILITY OF DIGITAL NAVIGATION PRODUCTS
Over the years, the e-navigation has become an accepted standard by mariners and other relevant stakeholders. Keeping in view the emerging requirements of digital products for ensuring safe navigation at sea, PNHD started production of Electronic Navigation Charts (ENCs) during first decade of this century. All INT series charts for which Pakistan is responsible have been developed.
SURVEYS OF NATIONAL IMPORTANCE
Apart from hydrographic surveys for charting, PNHD has conducted surveys for national coastal projects. In addition, PNHD has also conducted various inland surveys including survey of River Indus (Nowshera to DawoodKhel, Mianwali) to support studies for inland water transportation project.
SEA WATER INTRUSION PROJECT
Seawater Intrusion (SWI) is a phenomenon which has significant effects on coastal ecosystem and infrastructure. Considering its importance, Govt. has approved a project in April 2020 to undertake in-depth analysis based on scientific observations and working out way forward. The project shall complete in 5 years’ time. National Institute of Oceanography is leafing this project whereas PNHD is a member of this national level project for sharing relevant expert opinion and supporting field observations.
PNHD led Joint Mobile Survey Team comprising of 07 surveyors of regional countries to conduct bathymetric survey of approaches to Denis and Bird Islands (Seychelles).The survey was approved during 7th NIOHC meeting and conducted in Jan/Feb 2009 with the support of IHO capacity building funds.