In recent decades, Pakistan has faced extreme weather conditions such as floods, droughts, and cyclones that have killed and displaced thousands of people destroyed their livelihoods and damaged local infrastructure. For instance, the flood of 2010 killed 1600 people and the heat wave in Karachi during the month of June 2015 led to the death of more than 1200. These extreme weather events are a stark reminder that Pakistan is most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.
According to global climate risk index 2018 reported by German watch, Pakistan is the seventh most vulnerable country to climate change. This means that these natural hazards will only increase in frequency and severity in the upcoming decades.
The government of Pakistan has formulated various climate change policies and acts to tackle climate change threat, but their implementation remains a question. According to Zahid Hamid, Climate Change Minister of Pakistan, the government needs to implement climate change policy and projects that boost Pakistan’s climate resilience, set up early warning systems, and protect lives and livelihoods of people, through consultation and understanding with all the provincial units.
In this scenario, local communities and stakeholders should also be empowered so that they can participate actively in vulnerability assessment and implementation of adaptation and mitigation projects. Their inclusion will offer diverse perspectives and solutions along with an increase in a number of supporters and active participants in the climate change dialogue.
When it comes to the threat of climate change, all of us must do our part. We not only have a responsibility to reduce our individual carbon footprints by reforming our lifestyles but we also need to get involved at the community level to promote awareness. We need to take proactive action and make efforts to green our neighborhood, adopt environment-friendly practices, get involved in environmental protection programs, and support governmental actions on climate change. By joining hands and acting locally, we can effectively address the threat of climate change.