The Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) organized a Public Talk titled, “Global Climate Change and its Implications for Pakistan” on May 8, 2019. Dr. Adil Najam, Dean, Federick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, Boston University was the guest speaker at the occasion.
Welcoming the speaker and guests, Director General ISSI, Ambassador Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, said that it should no longer be a surprise to anyone anymore that Pakistan is one of the countries at greatest risk of the impacts of climate change. The people of Pakistan live this reality every day, and they are getting accustomed to nearly annual floods in the northern regions, droughts in Thar, deadly heat waves in Karachi and pollution fog in Lahore. An average Pakistani can well see how climate is impacting his/her life in real terms. According to long-term Climate Risk Index, Pakistan is the 8th most affected country by climate change from 1998 to 2017. In the last ten years, South Asia as a whole and Pakistan particularly, is in a constant procession of climatic crisis making the lives of the people miserable and insecure. Every time there is a flood or drought or disaster, it brings new challenges for the ordinary people and huge financial and law and order burden on the government. Thus, climate change is connected to the broader issue of human security. Pakistan`s climate change concerns include increased variability of monsoons, the likely impact of receding Himalayan glaciers on the Indus River System, reduced hydro-power during drought years and decreased capacity of water reservoirs. Other potential impacts induced by climate change includes severe water stress, food insecurity due to decreasing agriculture and livestock production, degradation of ecosystems and so on.