Environmentalists call G-B a ‘ticking bomb’

Published: May 31, 2016
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Experts say region is prone to various natural disasters. PHOTO: AFP

Experts say region is prone to various natural disasters. PHOTO: AFP

GILGIT: The climate change experts believe Gilgit-Batistan is a “ticking bomb” as it is prone to various disasters. They stressed there was a need in G-B to adapt to climate change if livelihoods had to be kept intact. This was stated at a workshop held at a hotel to talk about issues related to climate change and the environment.

While speaking at the workshop, World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) G-B chief Dr Babar Khan said adaptation was the best solution for mountainous regions such as G-B to avoid the negative impact of climate change.

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Amid danger

He said there are 7,000 glaciers in the Himalaya, Hindukush and Karakoram ranges and climate change formed another 2,500 lakes around them.

“Of these 2,500 lakes, 52 are highly dangerous and may pose serious threats to the population downstream in case of a slight tremor,” he said.

The workshop was organised by International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and WWF. Participants included KIU professors, researchers, academics, forest department officials and journalists.

Babar said data from the past 100 years suggested temperature in the region had drastically increased. “This led to shrinking of glaciers,  and the overall change in weather patterns has caused a delay in snowfall and affected agricultural yield,” he added.

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Effects on creatures

ICIMOD Director Dr Jasra said climate change also disturbed the schedule of seasonal birds.

“The population of butterflies decreased drastically in G-B owing to climate change in the region,” he added. “Birds and butterflies play a central role in pollination and their absence will disturb the ecosystem.”

The workshop was also addressed by G-B Forest, Wildlife and Environment Secretary Sajjad Haider.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 31st, 2016.

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Reader Comments (9)

  • Irtiza
    May 31, 2016 - 8:52AM

    All the concerns are shown in seminars/workshops only. I wonder what is being done practically to tackle these very serious issues. Recommend

  • Haris
    May 31, 2016 - 10:28AM

    Only issues are highlighted where are the solutions and what is our sleepy govt. doing about this ?Recommend

  • Syed Zulfiqar
    May 31, 2016 - 11:23AM

    @Haris: What to expect from sleepy govt just another nap :)Recommend

  • Waqas Zia
    May 31, 2016 - 11:57AM

    that was a good choice of venue. a lot of people come down from mountains daily to attend workshops in hotels .. lolRecommend

  • Amanullah Khan
    May 31, 2016 - 6:27PM

    All my dear commenters, please do not expect any solution from our political Saltanat either it is the Takht-e-Lahore or Nawabsha. It is non of their business. They have established their palaces and business empires in a number of countries investing billions of Dollars by looting the poor people of Pakistan. International money laundering experts get the highest public positions like Prime Ministers, Finance Ministers of Pakistan. This is the tragedy of our people. The Kings and like minded people are tension free and have given all sorts of tensions to the thinkers and aware people to look after those. Coming to the environmental issues of Gilchistan we have to do serious brain storming as to how to mitigate the threat. We must think about the alternate options of reducing the road traffic of heavy transport vehicular. We have been gifted by the Almighty Allah with Rivers and lakes those could be used for transport of goods and services. The proposal for establishing Railway track is another viable option to avoid the threat of tricking environmental bomb. In this regard the role of media is of utmost importance for creation of awareness. Recommend

  • Amanullah Khan
    May 31, 2016 - 7:05PM

    All my dear commenters, please do not expect any solution from our political Saltanat either it is Takht-e-Lahore or Nawabsha. It is non of their business. They have established their palaces and business empires in a number of countries investing billions of Dollars by looting the poor people of Pakistan. International money laundering experts get the highest public positions like Prime Ministers, Finance Ministers of Pakistan. This is the tragedy of our people. The Kings and like minded people are tension free and have given all sorts of tensions to the thinkers and aware people to look after those. Coming to the environmental issues of Gilchistan we have to do serious brain storming as to how to mitigate the threat. We must think about the alternate options of reducing the road traffic of heavy transport vehicular. We have been gifted by the Almighty Allah with Rivers and lakes those could be used for transport of goods and services. The proposal for establishing Railway track is another viable option to avoid the threat of ticking environmental bomb. In this regard the role of media is of utmost importance for creation of awareness.Recommend

  • Mehran
    Jun 1, 2016 - 5:47AM

    @Syed Zulfiqar:
    Good One on NAP :-)Recommend

  • Irfan Chourbati
    Jun 2, 2016 - 4:02PM

    Since mountains are the most active source for climate change, Gilgit-Baltistan needs due care from all international bodies for working on environmental change. The fast pace of melting of glaciers in a region which has the largest volume of frozen water reservoirs out of the polar region is not just a warning for the inhabitants of GB but for all the population surrounding the River Sindh.Recommend

  • syed & syed
    Jun 4, 2016 - 3:04AM

    Aternate water storage system and power generation is done considered by the past and present government.Recommend

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