Climate change and Pakistan

Letter November 23, 2021
Climate change and Pakistan

KARACHI:

The global climate crisis poses a number of threats to the prosperity and well-being of the people of Pakistan. The country already witnesses several climate- and weather-related natural hazards due to its geographical diversity and a varied tropical and continental climate.

Pakistan experiences recurring heatwaves and droughts, riverine and flash floods, landslides, and sea storms. Climate change is expected to increase the frequency and intensity of these events as well as exacerbate people’s vulnerabilities. Moreover, climate change also has the potential to trigger wide-ranging negative feedback loops between livelihoods and health. Pakistan is a low-middle income country that remains predominantly agrarian. The country relies heavily on its climate sensitive land, water and forest resources for livelihoods and food security. Impacts to health will reduce people’s ability to work. Migrants, internally displaced persons and religious and ethnic minorities will be highly vulnerable as they are often marginalised to hazard-prone land and face barriers in accessing healthcare.

Climate change may potentially increase the number of child marriages, premature births and domestic violence. Women and children will also be more vulnerable to malnourishment and malnutrition due to lower food production.

Wardah Malik

Lahore

Published in The Express Tribune, November 24th, 2021.

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