Pakistan Reader# 493, 29 December 2022
What did the UN say?
On 28 December, the United Nations 2022 Year in Review report on Climate and Environment said that Pakistan’s summer floods are a “stark reminder” of the changing climate in the country and would “bring more disasters” in the near future. The report said that regions including Pakistan were hit by catastrophic floods which caused a national emergency in the country. It said that the continued “warning” of the global ecosystem to maintain carbon emissions and climate emergencies would need an imperative cut down on fossil fuel use and asked the country to “consider various options” to deal with the results and fallouts of the changing climate.
This comes as the UN is hosting an international conference on Climate Resilient Pakistan in Geneva on 9 January. On 15 December, the UN Resident Coordinator for Pakistan Julien Harneis said that the UN’s “big concern” is to promise food security in the coming days for the people affected by the floods and rains and that the country is in a dilemma because of the damage that has devastated the country. The UN’s concern for Pakistan stems from the inadequate funds that are in place for the recuperation of the country, where UN’s World Food Programme officials have warned of a potential shortage of funds for the rehabilitation of Pakistan by 15 January 2023. They have also warned of a “serious crisis” in the future and said that they would be unable to help the country unless they get the “required support.”
Pakistan places in a considerably high position for being vulnerable to extreme weather caused by climate change which would lead to an increase in life-saving food assistance from four million to 5.1 million during the winter. The UN also said that in the country, nearly eight and nine million have been pushed below the poverty line by the floods and that it has caused impoverished families to lose their livelihoods in the coming days. The UN also warned the country of the potential risk of humanitarian crises in the country and said that the floods have also induced people into child labour, child marriages, and trafficking and has called on the government to maintain control over the already regressive situation in the country.
Anwar Iqbal, “UN report uses Pakistan floods to warn of more disasters,” Dawn, 29 December 2022
“UN says funds for flood-hit Pakistan to run out in weeks,” Dawn, 15 December 2022
Amin Ahmed, “UN sees major gap between pledges and flood relief aid,” Dawn, 13 October 2022