Pakistan experiences severe climate change, govt seems unaware

Pakistan experiences severe climate change, govt seems unaware

Pakistan is amongst the top ten countries on the globe experiencing frequent and intense climate change events such as floods, droughts, cyclones, heavy rains, extremely high temperatures, etc.

The average global temperature has increased due to increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere for last many years.

During the last century, it increased by 0.6oC and is expected to increase further by 1.0oC to 4.0oC till the end of the current century.

An official of Ministry of Climate Change said there will be considerable climatic changes in different world regions.

Pakistan has experienced flooding every year since 2010 which caused huge devastation of life, he said, adding that drought prevailed in the southern part of the country during 1998-2001 and it hit again in 2014 in two regions of the country, namely Tharparkar in Sindh and the Cholistan area in Punjab.

The most recent extreme climate events witnessed by Pakistan are floods hitting various parts of the country during spring and the ongoing monsoon season.

The climate change expert informed that a number of research studies have been conducted by various institutions to assess the impact of climate change on various socio-economic sectors of the economy and to evaluate possible changes in extreme climate events, i.e. floods, droughts, heat waves, etc.

Global Change Impact Studies Centre (GCISC), a dedicated research institute for climate change studies in the country, has conducted studies on climate change, climate extremes and impacts of climate change on water resources and agriculture, he informed.

Climate change projections made at GCISC indicates that the average temperature in Pakistan will increase in coming decades at a pace faster than that of the average global temperature.

It may exceed it by about 1 oC by the end of this century, resulting in the increase in the probability of occurrence of extreme climate events such as floods and droughts.

The studies further revealed that the probability of occurrence of cold days and nights has decreased while that of warm days and nights has increased over Pakistan, he elaborated.

GCISC studies have also shown that the increasing temperatures will negatively impact crop yields in Pakistan posing a serious threat to the food security of the country.

The water security of the country is also threatened by the climate change. The increasing temperatures in the northern mountains of the country will result in glacier melting, thereby affecting the flows of Indus River System (IRS), he said.