Efforts underway to tackle disaster management, heatwave : Sherry

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Federal Minister for Climate Change Senator Sherry Rehman on Monday said the Prime Minister in an important development has formulated a National Task Force to stir disaster management efforts to tackle severe heatwave and GLOF events.

Addressing a press conference she said the maiden meeting of the Task Force has been convened by the Prime Minister in the evening to be participated by all the provinces.

Senator Rehman said the meeting of the Task Force would decide to take measures against heatwave. “The heat-wave has spiked-up and gained longev-ity in its span. The glaciers in the north are melting rapidly because of pro-longed and extreme temperature spike.

“Pakistan has seen 152 extreme weather events in the past 20 years and the UN put Pakistan among the top 23 most drought hit countries and is among the top ten affected countries due to climate change”, she added.

“The international conferences like COPs are important to drive efforts to address climate change. Pakistan has less than one percent GHG emissions but the developed world has neglected the country despite its increased burden of natural disasters”.

“We have established over 1,000 heatwave cen-ters each in Sindh and Punjab and it’s meeting is being chaired by Secretary Ministry of Climate Change (MoCC). Heatwave will have serious impacts on masses and our early communication can help save lives”, she added.

The Met office has indicated a prolonged heat-wave till June, she said adding that the Ministry was also issuing advisories to the provinces in this re-gard.

“Pakistan is the third most water stress country in the world and its status is shifting from water stress to water scarce nation that will have huge impact on the country”.

A recent glacial lake outburst flood (GLOF) incident occurred due to the melting of glacial lake formed at Shisper Glacier that partially damaged the Karakoram Highway (KKH), she said.

“Pakistan has first time entered into summers without any spring season. If we may take prepar-edness measures then it will occur again in the next year due to global warming.”

Chipping in the media conference, Additional Secretary MoCC Jodat Ayaz said the climate sci-ence was considered in Pakistan as a matter of dec-ades to come, adding, “the scientific models pre-dicted for 2030 have started activating 10 years prior to the projected timelines”.

Chairman NDMA Lieutenant General Akhtar Nawaz Satti said the GLOF and other events have occurred in advance like the rest of the world due to global warming. As many as nine houses were permanently dam-aged, 6 partially destroyed alongwith a bridge and two hydel power projects completely damaged in the region, he said.

 

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