Climate Change is Causing $3.8 Billion Loss Annually to Pakistan

The rising temperatures, sea levels, and pollution caused by climate change have severely impacted Pakistan’s economy, reported the Express Tribune.

Climate change has caused an average of $3.8 billion economic loss annually to the Pakistani economy for the last two decades. With the impacts of climate change becoming harsher, the global buyers are pressurizing local exporters to take policy measures.

Chairperson Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), Shamshad Akhtar, while talking on the issue at the “The Future Summit–What’s Coming Next,” on Wednesday, said that tremendous pressure was being imposed by international markets, which are ready to move towards zero emissions.

Shamshad Akhtar further remarked that global uncertainties had increased following the financial crisis of 2008. She added that given the current circumstances, climate change was going to be the next crisis for the economies around the globe.

Pakistan is ranked as the fifth most climate-vulnerable country by the Global Climate Risk Index, with 152 extreme weather episodes over the past decade or so.

Pakistan’s greenhouse gas emissions surged by 50 percent, with CO2 recorded at 200 million tons in 2019.

According to data, the biggest contributor to pollution in the country is the transport sector, which is followed by industry, agriculture, and land practices.

The textile sector of Pakistan has also contributed 6-8 percent of the emissions, from which 70 percent is attributed to upstream energy-intensive material processing.

The PSX Chairperson stated that if the country did not act to sustain the climate, the cost would be greater than the cost of climate action.

She pointed out that the public expenditure made to tackle the problem was merely 6-7 percent.

It must be noted that only a small portion of the corporate sector provides sustainable reporting, and even fewer have committed to zero-emission by 2030 that took place during the 26th Climate Change Conference (CCO-26) in Glasgow.

To counter the problem, fundamental amendments to policy need to be adopted along with legal and regulatory frameworks.

Shamshad Akhtar hoped to give suggestions on what policies the government could follow to counter the impending crisis, and she hoped to see policy implementation on the issue.