Rising Temperatures

With scientists now predicting that the Earth has an increased chance of breaking the 1.5 C limit for global temperatures, the risks for climate-stressed countries such as Pakistan continue to increase exponentially. According to experts, there is now a 66 percent chance that the Earth will break the 1.5 C threshold by 2027 at some point. The scale of devastation witnessed in last year’s floods was astounding, but the worst part about climate-related disasters is that they will only increase in frequency and unpredictability as temperatures rise and the world’s climate becomes more volatile.
While the 1.5 C might not be permanent, it is still something to be very concerned about. With increasing glacial melt and more unpredictable rainfall patterns, Pakistan’s flood risk only continues to increase, but this is only one aspect of the problem. Alongside the floods, more droughts, forest wildfires and other dangerous climate effects are just as possible.
For Pakistan, the journey to becoming a state that can protect itself and its citizens from the worst effects of the change in temperature and the increase in the frequency of natural disasters has only just begun. Even after the calamitous floods last year, we have yet to secure funding for the ten-year National Flood Protection Programme. The expected rise in temperatures over the next few days will only accelerate the risk of wildfires in regions such as the Margalla Hills. The Ministry of Climate Change looks to be hard at work at garnering international support for the fight against rising temperatures and increased risks here at home. But there must also be more local participation where possible. With budget constraints government spending on this remains a challenge, but policy changes can be made to incentivize business and citizens to play their part in the fight against climate change.

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