Pakistan suffered economic damages worth $2941 billion due to disasters, Mushahidullah

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ISLAMABAD, Oct 13 (APP):Federal Minister for Climate Change Senator Mushahidullah Khan Friday said that Pakistan had suffered 133 climate change-induced disasters from year 1996 to 2015, which caused economic damages to the tune of US$ 2,941.
Talking to media persons here in connection with the International Day for Disaster Reduction being marked today across the world, he said that protecting lives and livelihoods of the people, particularly in the country’s disaster-prone areas such as mountainous and coastal, through public awareness programmes and integrating disaster-resilience in public infrastructure development policies must for achieving sustainable economic development and poverty elimination.
He said, that the day offered a great opportunity to sensitise public about viable techniques today and everyday to reduce their vulnerabilities to climate change-induced disasters, particularly, land and river erosions, forest fires,, riverine and glacial lake outburst floods in the country.
“Role of the government, nongovernmental organizations and media is key to highlight importance of disaster risk reeducation in the disaster-prone Paksitan, which is ranked among the top ten most vulnerable countries to climate change-caused disasters, which have shown increase in frequency and intensity since 2010,” Mushahidullah Khan underlined.
The International Day for Disaster Reduction is marked every year on 13th October across the world under the ageis of the United Nations and countries including Pakistan celebrate the day. This year the Day is being marked under the theme ‘Home Safe Home: Reducing Exposure, Reducing Displacement and key focus is to highlight unprecedented importance of reducing the number of affected people by disasters by 2030.
Mushahidullah Khan said that the country had been ranked the 7th most affected country in the world because of climate change-related disasters, which had become more frequent intense and warned that the country’s ranking about vulnerability to disasters could worsen if all relevant federal and provincial government organizations failed to implement disaster risk reduction programmes , particularly in agriculture, energy, water, health, education, transport, infrastructure and energy sectors.
Quoting figures from the German Watch Index-2017 report, the minister said that as many as 133 climate change-induced disasters have occurred in the country between 1996 to 2015, which have caused economic damages of several billion dollars over these years.
“The climate change-related disasters, particularly riverine and flash floods, cause around four billion dollars of losses annually in economic damages, most of them related to agriculture, water, irrigation, health, education, energy and public infrastructure sectors,” he said.
Mushahidullah Khan pointed out, “Addressing these climate change-induced challenges and boosting countries resilience through local and national adaptation plans require an annual investment of around 40 billion dollars in renewable energy, transport, waste management and forestry sectors for mitigating 20 percent of its national carbon emissions by 2030 and seven 14 billion dollars annually for adapting to shifting climatic patterns.”
He stressed that ranked extremely vulnerable country to extreme climate events, Pakistan is in a state of forced adaptation to strengthen its resilience through these hefty investments projects that help protect the country from exacerbating fall outs of climate change on people, their lives and livelihoods, country’s economic sectors, mainly agriculture, water, energy and transport.
There is a huge potential for adaptation in Pakistan, particularly in strengthening and fortifying the flood infrastructure including water reservoirs and irrigation network. This would involve enhancing resilience of local communities to the adverse impacts of climate change.