Express Tribune: Struck by worst natural disasters in recent years, Pakistan needs resources, long-term policy and political commitment to cope with climate change. This was said by Strengthening Participatory Organisation (SPO) Chief Executive Naseer Memon during a workshop on climate change on Monday. A group of journalists attended the session, which was organised by a non-partisan civil society group Individual and Pakistan in collaboration with Friedrich Naumann Foundation.
A presentation on reasons and impact of climate change were given to the participants, following which Memon held an interactive session with journalists. He explained the phenomenon of climate change with a special focus on Pakistan and suggested measures which can be taken to create awareness on the issue. It is imperative for every citizen to realise his social responsibility to contribute towards better climatic conditions and even small steps such as saving electricity and avoiding the use of plastic bags can make a huge difference,” he said.
Memon was of the view that the absence of an early warning system was the main reason behind devastation of the floods. Other reasons such as encroachment on Indus Basin and deforestation also contributed towards damage, he added. Moving on to explain the intensity of the issue, he said Pakistan’s position in the world’s most vulnerable countries has fallen from 30 to 16 during the recent years.
“Pakistan borders two top polluters – China and India – and is therefore targeted by natural calamities. The population and industrial growth of these two countries is posing a threat to the entire region,” he said. He further said Pakistan received more than half of average annual monsoon rain in August 2010 alone and if the situation remains the same the country will be facing serious challenges in the near future.
Started in year 2010, ‘Climate Himalaya’ initiative has been working on the mountains and climate linked issues in the Himalayan region of South Asia. In the last four years this knowledge sharing portal has become one of the important references for the governments, research institutions, civil society groups and international agencies, those have work and interest in Himalayas. The Climate Himalaya team innovates on knowledge sharing, capacity building and climatic adaptation aspects in its focus countries like Bhutan, India, Nepal and Pakistan. Climate Himalaya’s thematic areas of work are mountain ecosystem, water, forest and livelihood. Read>>